King's Business - 1968-10

L IB E R T Y ... T H E A M E R IC A N W A Y / A SATIRE ON FREEDOM by *Don ( j U . M ilfis

—and the child is no more dead if he does have the misfortune to get hit. We are killing people all the time in spite of all your Yield, Cauton, and Stop signs. Thousands each year suffer from broken necks, because their cars have been hit from the rear while waiting at stop signs. We must do away with all such hair- brain signs and signals. They are death traps to those who obey them. And how about the law of not mixing alcohol and gasoline? Doesn’t the man who pays taxes on his gasoline also pay taxes on his alcohol? Why, then, should he be restricted as to the use of either? Inconsistent, isn’t it, for the law to allow him to get drunk in his own home and beat up his wife and children, only to crack down on him the moment he gets into his car? Of course, I am aware that drunk-driving kills many more Americans every year than the Viet Nam war, but that’s no reason for robbing a man o f his civil rights. He probably gets more pleasure from driving while drunk, and we all ought to have the right to pursue happiness unhindered by a lot of laws. Some men get pleasure out of murdering nurses and our government spends thousands of our tax dollars to protect them from their just pen­ alty. Others get pleasure out of peddling pornog­ raphy, knowing they are well protected by our Supreme Court. Others travel around the world saying all the treasonous things they want about the USA, only to be given perfect liberty to start riots when they return to the States. So why pick on the drunken driver? Why pick on anybody? It stifles self-expression. Let’s do away with all traffic laws. Let’s give every Ameri­ can citizen the run of the road. After all, he has paid for it, and he deserves it. Come to think of it, what I have said about traffic laws probably should be applied to all laws. Human nature is at its best when it has liberty. If that proves in a few cases to be liberty to destroy, to criticize, to kill, and to break laws, we should not penalize the many for the excess of the few. Let every man do that which is right in his own eyes. Mathematical absolutes are necessary, but moral absolutes are archaic. Let’s do away with law. Maybe Patrick Henry should have said, “Give me liberty and give me death.” Liberty—that’s the American way,—but what kind of liberty ? How are we using it? Dr. Don Hillis is Associate Director of The Evangelical Alliance Mission.

T h is w e e k , 1000 Americans will take their last ride (except for the hearse) in an automobile. You may be one of them. This year more than 50,000 people will be killed and hundreds of thou­ sands injured (some permanently) in car accidents. Our highways are the bloodiest slaughter house in America. More safety devices in cars help, but obviously they are not the answer. The real need is a thor­ ough overhaul of our archaic traffic laws. In our present maze o f driving rules, individual rights are so cramped as to hinder safety on the road. You are forced by law to drive on the right side of the road at all times, in all states, and in all kinds of weather. On two-lane highways, there is a center line over which you must not cross and a yellow line which informs you when you can or cannot pass. How restrictive can we get? There are times when your judgment as to when you should pass is far more important than a yellow line. There are also times when the left side o f the road is smoother, less hazardous, and more desir­ able to drive on. Furthermore, there are entire na­ tions of people who drive safely on the left side of the road. Why shouldn’t you? I am not arguing for changing the law from right to left side driving. That, too, is restrictive. I am simply putting in an earnest plea for individ­ ual liberty. As a tax-paying (gas-tax included) citizen, you certainly deserve the right to choose which side of the road you want to drive on as much as the right to choose the direction in which you will go. Given such liberty, tension would be cut down and would be less accident-prone. It is a factory-tested and scientifically proven fact that your 340-horsepower car can carry you safely along our highways at 90 miles an hour. But it is left to the highway department to arbitrarily set 70 as the speed limit. And to prove the incon­ sistency of it all, in some places it is held to 65— or even 60. How much saner it would be to leave speed to the driver’s own judgment. The model T that cannot travel safely over 35 miles an hour should not required to maintain a minimum of 45. A car that is easily controlled at 90 should not be held down to 70. This throttling of personal liberty on the highway tends to cause accidents. And have you ever thought of the stupidity of school zone regulations. “ Speed Limit, 20 Miles an Hour.’’ This is madness! A 6-year-old child hit by a 3000-pound car traveling at 20 miles an hour has little chance of living. On the other hand, if the driver has the liberty to speed up to 50 or 60, he has a good chance of getting through the zone before some careless child darts out in front of him


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