Monday, February 8, 2010

Today's news comes from the Utah state legislature which is currently in session, fighting about ridiculous laws with the ridiculousness of people who know that most citizens don't notice they exist anyway. I heard about this story while listening to the radio, but here's a link to a print story about a bill that proposes a loosening of booster seat laws in Utah.

So, some lawmakers here in Salt Lake think the law that requires youngsters up to age 8 to be strapped into booster seats is excessive and should be pulled back.  No one was going to go for that, because it's ridiculous, so a committee has sent an amended version of the bill to the floor of the UT House of Representatives.

The new bill would make it legal for kids under 8 to go booster seat free as long as the car they're riding in is within four miles of their homes and not on any roads with speed limits above 45 mph.  Liberal lawmakers, parent groups, and doctors are calling this a "bad bill."  Conservative groups call it a blow for freedom.

"They can force our kids into carseats, but they'll never take...our FREEDOM!"  Simmer down, Braveheart.  Simmer down.

Can someone tell me how a bill this silly (and potentially dangerous) becomes the rallying cry of freedom fighters?  We've gone from "Give me liberty or give me death!" to "Give me liberty or give me a meaningless approximation or give me death!"  If the bill passes, will they throw a party?  "We got what we fought for...20% of the time, in certain circumstances, unless there are already booster seats in the car and parents don't want to unstrap them!  Take THAT, imperialist swine!"

I like parties.  Maybe I'll join the freedom fight.  I think this business of needing a driver's license is infringing on my God given rights.  I propose a bill that says I have to have a license to drive except when I'm driving a white car on a two lane road in the summer.  Booyah!

William Wallace would be so proud.


Lisa said...

I couldn't believe it myself when I saw the news clip. GMAB! WHAT are they fighting for? Obviously not their children's safety. Stupid. "Mom, why don't I have to wear my seatbelt when we go to school?" "Because they changed the law- apparently children DON'T die in car accidents that happen within 4 miles of home." Hello? Idiots. But, this is coming from me... I wear my seatbelt to drive across the street to the service station.

a little music said...

Ok, we'll have to butt heads here. I think the current law IS excessive.

While I'm all in favor of safety, my kids would never have let me strap them into a booster seat until age 8. However, I have always been very careful to buckle them into a shoulder-strap seat belt once they grew out of their booster seats.

The key word is 'careful', though. While some parents will always be careful regardless of how many laws there are, some parents will never be careful regardless of how many there are. The strictness or laxness of legislation will never change the way parents care for their children, unfortunately. Wouldn't it be great if it was as simple as all that?

Erin said...

These car seat things always make me roll my eyes. Was I in a booster seat until age 8? No. In fact, I wasn't even in a car seat at age 2, nope I was in a regular seatbelt. Were our parents in any kind of car seat at all? Maybe, but most cars didn't even have seatbelts when they were kids, imagine the ability to breastfeed while riding in a car. It would make some days much easier. Are we all alive and safe? Yes. Are kids safer now because they are in car seats and boosters, yes, and I will use them but sometimes in extenuating circumstances that may not be possible and because of current laws I would be ticketed/fined for it...I'm just saying.

Kendra said...

My kids are both very tall, so boosters were not used after they were 5 & 6. Getting pulled over last night, the police officer apparently did not know the law, and attempted to lecture. Ultimately, since he couldn't prove anything, they let my boyfriend & I go. I'm almost 30 yrs old...I look young and was getting the "oh, you're just a kid still" attitude.