July 3, 2001
Can that Little Vein in Your Forehead Cause an Aneurysm?
OK, I realize this is going to make me sound like a horrible person, but I now think that anyone over the age of 55 should be required to take their driving test every two years. Now let me explain why, even though you've probably heard it before.
On the way to work this morning, I was behind a very noticeably old person. Given the speed he was(n't) driving and his erratic steering/braking, he almost caused three accidents in a three-mile stretch, one of them potentially with me.
I know all the arguments about this, about how teenagers are more likely to be involved in an accident, yadda yadda yadda. Truth be told, teenagers are more likely to be involved in single-car accidents. That means junior's more likely to take his new Camaro, take a turn too fast, wrap the car around a tree and Darwinize himself, without hurting anybody else. Older people, on the other hand, are more likely to take part in a multiple-car accident. That means when Maude slams on the brakes because there's a stoplight a mile up the road and she should get ready now, the person behind her is going to wind up in the trunk of her 1982 Chevy Caprice Classic.
To summarize: Teenagers are dangerous to themselves. Old people are dangerous to themselves and everyone else. It's not their fault, and to be honest I feel sorry for them. They've been independent more than twice as long as I've been alive, and they don't want to give that up. But I also hope that if and when I become that dangerous on the roads, someone will take my keys from me. And if the familys can't or won't do it, then the state will have to. And I don't like turning anything over to the government, but it seems like that's the only way this will get done.