reply to post by Jean Paul Zodeaux
Although I can appreciate your wise words when it comes to aiming for the greater good, I still can not see your point of view when it applies to the
licensing of motor vehicle operators.
No where in any constitution is a person guaranteed the right to operate a motor vehicle. No where. It is your interpretation that preventing a
person from operating a motor vehicle is limiting their ability to travel or pursue happiness. In fact, you can still travel and pursue happiness
without a motor vehicle. It is your interpretation that a motor vehicle is NECESSARY to travel and pursue happiness but that is an unreasonable
assessment and here is why.
Believe it or not, it takes a basic level of skill and responsibility to operate a motor vehicle. A motor vehicle can cause great damage to property
and can be a great threat to other's safety becasue of the size, weight and speeds a motor vehicle can reach. A person without this basic level of
skill and responsibility operating a motor vehicle poses a threat to other citizen's safety and property. I do not think there is any rational
argument to this line of logic.
Laws have been passed, for the common good, that require a person to prove to the state that they have the basic level of skill and responsibility to
operate a motor vehicle. Once one has proven they have the basic skills to operate a motor vehicle, they are granted a license to drive. After this,
it is a matter of responsibility. If you prove to maintain a level of responsibility and not drive recklessly or violate the basic traffic laws,
enacted for the common safety of other drivers, then you may keep your license.
If you violate these laws and show that you lack the responsibility to operate a motor vehicle, then you pose a danger to not only yourself but others
operating their motor vehicles or simply walking down the road. If you show a complete disreguard for the basic responsibility required to operate a
motor vehicle, then your license will be suspended or revoked. All of this after due process of law and your day in court.
If you decide to disreguard your suspended or revoked license and drive anyway, in some states you are subject to arrest. This is justified because
of the threat to public safety because you have already demonstrated that you lack the basic skills or basic responsibility to operate a motor
Even with a suspended or revoked license, a person is still free to travel anywhere they please or pursue happiness until they find it. Those rights
are not taken away just because you can not operate a motor vehicle. It is your interpretation that your rights have been alienated because you can
not do what you want whenever you want. I submit that it would be unfair that someone who has demonstrated that they lack the basic skills and
responsibility to operate a motor vehicle, that weighs thousands of pounds and can reach speeds of over one hundred miles per hour, is allowed to
operate said motor vehicle and crash it into another human being seriously injuring or killing them in the process.
Traffic laws are not enforced with fines to generate revenue for the state. The fines are in place as a punishment or deterrence to change the
driving habits of drivers in an attempt to make them more safe for the common good. The police department should not, and in most cases do not,
benefit from the fines collected on citations. The fines should go, and in most cases do go, into the general fund for the state which then can turn
them around and use the revenue towards fixing the roads which licensed operators use. All of those that claim the police department benefits
financially from writing citations are most likely wrong. The reason I say most likely is because I do not know a single municipality where this is
the case. If you have proof that any police department directly collects revenue from the citations it writes please correct me. The reason no
police department directly collects revenue from traffic citations is because it is a blatant conflict of interest and if it is practiced by any
municipality it should be corrected.
You are correct in saying it is not the badge that is to be respected but the person, I wholeheartedly agree with you. What I do not agree with is
the fact that you would attribute most police officers as being rogue or lawless. I agree that there are bad cops, but I would submit that they are
the minority. I can understand why people would think that bad cops are the majority but this is not the case. This minority of bad cops and their
actions get the most attention. Through the media or by word of mouth, the minorities actions ring out the loudest while the majority of good cops
whose actions meet or exceed the expectations of the public get much less notoriety. It is everyone's duty to weed out bad cops who abuse their
power and mistreat the public, including other police. But it is also everyone's duty to realize that not all police are bad.
To those of you who think we live in a police state, we absolutely do not. The police enforce the law which is voted in by the majority. If
marijuana was to be legalized tomorrow, the police would not continue to arrest people possessing it just because they disagreed with it. That is how
it works. That is how the people directly control the actions of police officers. Through legislation.