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If you can't drive 55...

I was almost killed last week. I know that this will be very disturbing to my loyal fan, but it is true. Now this is different from most of the times that I have almost been killed... this one wasn't my fault. I was minding my own business, driving down the interstate to a client meeting when a woman driving a very large car decided that she needed to exit right here, right now. The problem was, she had to cross five lanes of traffic to go where she needed, and I was in the way. The one thing that I did notice while I was avoiding the ditch at the side of the road was that she had to be at least 80 years old.

I know that this woman did not even recognize the fact that anyone else was on the road. She had someplace to go, pointed her car in that direction and went.

To me, this poses an interesting question. Why was this woman driving? At its simplest, because she could. No one could stand in her way. At least in Kansas, this is the case. When it comes time to renew your license, the state sends you the test and the answer booklet. All you have to do is fill out the test, take it to the DMV, pay your $25 and you have a license. It can't be much easier than that. The state does not make sure that you have the mobility, strength or mental capacity to operate a vehicle; only that you can produce a completed test and pay the required fee. It seems to me that this could create a situation where a lot of people that don't have the ability to drive are on the road when they really shouldn't.

Now, I am sure that everyone has seen people that shouldn't drive on the road. There are bad drivers that are 25 and there are bad drivers that are 75. It just seems to me that there are a great deal of elderly drivers that really do not have the ability do drive a car that do because they can.

Now, I am not advocating that every elderly driver have their license removed. I know that being able do drive gives people mobility and freedom that they are not afforded without a car and those who can should be afforded that freedom. My thought is that those who do not have the physical or mental ability should not be allowed to have a license. Not that this will stop people from driving, but it is a start. Then, make sure that a licensed driver is the registered owner of the car.

So, how do we keep people who shouldn't be driving off the road? Simple. Instead of giving away licenses to anyone who can pay the fee, force people to take a driving test. Not just the elderly. Everyone. This has been tried before in Kansas. It shouldn't surprise you that the AARP was the biggest lobby against this legislation. They want to make sure that the people that they represent stay happy. The state also felt as though it would cost too much to implement.

This again is an easy solution. To put it simply, driving is a privelege not a right. It is a right that you should have to pay for. In order to support the testing structure, make people pay for it. Then, you create a self supporting structure that is not a revenue drain. In the end, you create a self supporting revenue structure that makes the roads safer.

All-in-all, I'm for it. Especially if it means I live another day to write another post.


Comments

You live in the crappiest county, driving-wise, in Kansas. All those ladies have SUVs. You're so overly screwed monkey boy, get over it. It's one of those inevitable outcomes, you WILL eventually get hit in a car in Kansas by some idiot who wasn't watching. I had mine at school, your day will come. Just hope the airbag doesn't spill your coffee all over you. There's a mulitmillion dollar lawsuit waiting to happen.

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