The town of Huron, South Dakota, has become one of the latest to ban texting while driving. The City Commission approved the ordinance on Monday night to become one of the countless places across the country to outlaw the practice.
This particular ordinance has a twist though: It also bans “distracted driving.” Distracted drivers are ones that may be doing anything from eating pizza to reading a newspaper while driving, according to Mayor Dave McGirr.
Anyone else think it’s a big jump from eating pizza to reading a newspaper? Who reads a newspaper while cruising down the highway? That’s just stupid. We don’t need laws for stupidity.
Anyway, I have a question for the Huron City Commission: What am I supposed to do with my kids when I need to run some errands? And how exactly are they supposed to get to school in the morning or practices in the afternoon? What about moms of crying babies, should they just leave them at home, so as not to be “distracted” while driving?
I am way more distracted while driving when I have my kids in the car. In the mornings, I’m usually trying to quiz my fourth-grader for whatever test she has that day, begging my pre-kindergartener to please-for-the-love-of-everything-holy put her shoes on, gulping down a Red Bull while putting my hair into a ponytail, and rifling through their backpacks in the front seat to make sure they have all their stuff.
Compared to that, eating a slice of pizza would be a piece of cake.
Distracted driving is not the issue -- dangerous driving is. I know when I’m distracted by the goings-on in my vehicle, so I make extra certain to keep a keen eye on the road. I don’t tailgate anyone. I check my blind spots. I do my best to stay safe and keep my kids safe.
We already have laws against unsafe driving -- let’s work on enforcing those before we enact one outlawing eating while driving. Heck, some days the only time I do have to eat is while I’m in the car. Besides, what will happen to the drive-thru? Who can resist sneaking at least a couple of those hot, fresh fries right out of the bag as you pull away from the window? Not me.
Prediction for the future if we continue down this path: Banning chewing gum and walking at the same time. Multitasking is hard and we wouldn’t want anyone walking into a pole or low-hanging branch.
Do you get distracted with your kids in the car?
Photo via mrJasonWeaver/Flickr