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No texting while driving law is absurd

Is texting while driving any worse than putting on make-up?
Is texting while driving any worse than putting on make-up?
Street sign altered by Gary Thison

Texting while driving is absolutely wrong..unless you're me. According to one study the average person takes their eyes off the road for 4.6 seconds out of every six seconds while texting. Now that's crazy. Maybe I should teach a class on safe texting while driving.

When I am driving and need to text, I glance down at the phone for .7 seconds and determine where the letters are. I then begin texting without looking for four or five seconds. Then, I look down at the screen for .916 seconds and see if what I typed resembles what I intended to type. If not, I place my finger on the delete key (no need to look for that) and hit it as many times as required to get back to where the text isn't screwed up. Usually, it's just fine. I then continue that method until the message is complete. Then I glance for less than a second, back to the road, then one last look before hitting send. Just be aware that if you're using TrueType that many keystroke combinations can result in a number of different words.

The State House and Senate have passed almost identical measures regarding texting and if they reconcile it, Governor Granholm has said she will sign it and it could be in effect as early as May 1, 2010. Texting while driving will be a secondary offense, meaning that you will have to be pulled over for some other infraction before you can be ticketed for texting.

Yes, it's true that texting can be dangerous if not done properly (see above), but making it illegal is absurd and another example of how our legislators are wasting their time on frivolous issues in the face of all of the more important issues before them.

Apparently, this law will also make it illegal to use your on-board GPS system. Yeah, that's gonna happen.

What's next? Are they going to legislate that we all have to brush our teeth three times a day because it is safer, reduces dental and medical expenses and minimizes the spread of germs (not to mention bad breath)? Maybe they will need to put cameras in all of our bathrooms. Or distribute government issued toothbrushes with a moisture sensor and stroke meter on it.

Further, if it's not illegal to talk on the phone, how are law enforcement officials going to determine whether you're dialing a number or creating a text message?

Passing the no texting while driving law is absurd for many reasons. Sure, it can be dangerous. But is it any more dangerous than trying to find an acceptable radio station? Reading the newspaper? Checking a map? How about the countless women I see every morning putting on make-up? Most of these activities, if they result in some other violation, would fall under the Careless Driving law. Why not just add texting while driving to that category and spend a little more time on the 14% unemployment rate.


  • Mandy - Detroit Relationship Angst 5 years ago

    I think me being on the road regardless of what I'm doing is enough of a hazard in itself. I'm a woman. It happens.

  • Patrick Rall-Detroit Autos Examiner 5 years ago

    I drove from Chicago to Detroit last night and EVERY single time I came up on someone who wasnt going the speedlimit, who was wandering off the road, and/or those who didnt move when the light turned green...they were all playing with a phone. either talking or doing something that looks like texting, checking mail..something. This drives me crazy and its one of my biggest pest peeves.

    When you are driving you are controlling a vehicle that can very easily kill someone. Most of the people on the road are barely fit to drive when they are doing NOTHING else, let alone trying to talk or text at the same time.

    Most people dont have any real need to talk on the phone or text when driving. These people driving 25 year old cars with parts dragging on the ground arent surgeons talking someone through a life or death they dont need to be taking any attention away from driving.

  • Willi Gutmann 5 years ago

    It's simple - when you are in the car you drive, period.
    Not eating, shaving, reading newspaper, putting on makeup, texting,
    e-mailing, cell phone , etc., etc.
    Just drive.

    Detroit Kyak Examiner

  • Michael V 5 years ago

    If something is that important that you need to text while driving the safe thing to do is pull over for a minute or two and take care of business. It just isn't worth the chance because is those fractions of a second that your eyes are not on the road an accident could occur that wouldn't have had you not tried to text while driving. Not only should it be a law, but additional activities should be included in the legislation, like driving while make-upping, driving while speed-loading a Big Mac in your mug, and other activities that have caused accidents, as well as motor vehicle deaths. If texting while driving is that much of an emergency, then you need to pull over and do it, period.

  • Pat Atlanta Faith and Family Examiner 5 years ago

    Have you seen the horrible bloody e-mail going around of the boy who was texting and went over the center line and underneath a tractor trailer? They warn you about the last two. The first one shows the supper half of his body lying on a black body bag and the bottom half being dragged by his legs to put with the other half? Wonder how many parts of a second, he took his eyes off the road? This last photo shows all of his insides hanging out. All those too hard headed to listen should have to view this photo. Send me your e-mail via my site and I will send it to you. I promise you will think more about texting and driving.

  • shawn 5 years ago

    just because you suck at multitasking doesn't mean I do. Blabbing to the person in the seat next to you while tuning the radio is more dangerous for most then me looking down at my phone.

    I drive 4 hours a day on the 10 years not even a speeding ticket. just because you dumb kid f'd up shouldn't cause me issues...

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