Thats right people, You heard it here. A cop bitching about new laws being passed.
Sure it gives me one more reason to stop you and give you a ticket. But lemme let you in on a little secret. I can only speak for myself, but I’m sure I speak for a lot of cops when I say that for the most part I don’t want to fuck up peoples day by giving them a ticket. But if someone is blatantly commiting an infraction in front of me I have to act.
This being said, the Massachusetts lawmakers in their infinate wisdom have now acted upon a petition to outlaw cell phone use in vehicles. Sure there are more loopholes in the bill than you can shake a baton at but it’s another instance where the road to hell is paved (by the insurance companies) with “dubius” good intentions.
The bill was proposed after a tragedy where a 16 year old girl had been killed in a car accident because she “may or may not have been” text messaging while driving.
With all due respect to the victim and her family it’s just common sense that you are being unsafe if you are texting while driving. There is already a law on the books that deals with instances such as this that I can charge if needed if I see it happening. This legislation is a knee jerk reaction to a tragic incident to make the community feel like the legislators are doing something for the outrageous paychecks that they are accumulating for their services.
There are thousand of laws on the books in Massachusetts (some that are so antiquated that I would never even think to use) Yes, there are even some pertaining to horse and buggy management and maintanance. And as much of a history buff who likes nostalgia as I am even I know that the legislature should take a day out of their busy schedule and go over motor vehicle laws and pair down the ones that are obsolete.
As I stated above the new law bans all cell phone usage without hands free technology to all drivers in the commonwealth.
The loopholes include Emergency situations (who determines what an emergency is?)
Talking with hands free technology, but not direct connect connections (Nextel) but they did not realize that they had already passed a law banning headphones while driving, and what do you need for hands free? perhaps a headphone to hear the person you are talking to?
And there are several more loopholes, but those are the glaring ones.
And all Emergency personell are excluded (Which means everyone who gets a ticket can gripe that its unfair that I can use a cell phone in my cruiser)
- Raising the legal driving age from 16 to 18?
- If you feel you need to make a new law then restricting it to text messaging ?
- If you feel you need to make a new law covering all cell phones then make the law pertain to jr. operators?
The big winners in this whole fiasco is the insurance companies, the law proposes that anyone cited will be subject to six (6) years of surcharges and a loss of good driver points which nets them a ton of money.
The big losers in this are Joe and Joan Bagodonuts who try to live life and obey the ever stifiling laws that are being passed on behalf of “keeping the children safe”
My question is how the hell did all of our forefathers keep the children safe for the last 200 years without all these neat little laws?