Nanny State vs. Common Sense

Why even have this fight? Regina Thomas, D-Savannah; Jeff Mullis, R-Chickamauga; J. B. Powell, D-Blythe; and Ed Tarver, D-Augusta have co-sponsored legislation to get rid of the law requiring a helmet to ride a motorcycle.

Why refight that fight? At least in this case, unlike the seatbelts in trucks case, they do not appear to be mandating that juries cannot take into account the fact that someone is not wearing a helmet.

Any why hasn’t Jeff Mullis done that? If he’s so intent on the idea of allowing people to ride along without seatbelts, why not allow that evidence to be used in court so juries can properly proportion negligence?

You know, Christy and I know a family that recently was in a car wreck at 30 mph. The driver was wearing a seat belt. The front seat passenger and the back seat passenger were not. The front seat passenger died and the back seat passenger is in a coma. The driver had no injuries whatsoever.

14 comments

  1. Jace Walden says:

    Erick,

    Honest question: At what point does it become the responsibility of the individual to look out for his/her own safety?

    Using your “common sense” logic, the government should be able to ban or regulate everything that has even the potential to do harm to someone. This isn’t “common sense”. It’s pussy-boy, nanny-state bullsh*t.

    I thought you ConservativeRepublicans© were supposed to be advocates of personal responsibility?

    Oh, and regarding the story you provided. The driver was the only intellegent person in the car. Everyone else should have made better decisions.

  2. Icarus says:

    “This isn’t “common sense”. It’s pussy-boy, nanny-state bullsh*t.”

    The company line, Jace, is “Helmet laws suck”.

  3. Tea Party says:

    If it were only as simple as “Live Free or Die”

    Closed head injuries are horrible and costly for EVERYONE. Anyone dumb enough to zip about on a ‘murdercycle’ (as they are known in the medical community) without proper protection should have the decency to die , if they wreck.

    Although harsh, this issue is dumber’n a bag of hammers.

    Last time I heard, farmers do not litter the emergency rooms due to closed head injuries. This is a ‘greater good’ law and ought not be changed.

    We pay, and we pay, its off to work today, to pay, to pay, to pay, pay, pay.

  4. Tea Party says:

    Millions of dollars in Federal matching funds, arguable not helpful to farmers, are lost.

    Though a hassle to farmers, the seat belt law is also a ”greater good issue” that is unrelated to the helmet law.

    Must be a slow news day….

  5. drjay says:

    again if you want to zip around on your motorcycle on your own private property w/out a helmet you can do so all day long–but once you enter a public street on which driving is not a right but a privilege one must be licensed to do you eneter into a social contract w/ assumptions w/ it like the purchase of insurance, the maitenence of your vehicle, the adherence to traffic laws, etc, a helmet law is no greater a burden than any of those and is as much for the rest of the population as it is for the rider in question…based on your logic we should scrap traffic laws altogether–why should “big gov’t” be able to regulate my speed through town or or when i stop and go, or what i drink while i’m driving–i should just exercise personal responsibility–right???

  6. Bill Simon says:

    The same logic can (and should) apply to this brute force attempt to jam your religious beliefs of when a human being becomes a person onto everyone else’s existence.

  7. John Konop says:

    I agree with Dr. Jay and Erick.

    Yet I am not sure about this point.

    Erick is the driver legally liable if his passengers are not wearing seat belts? And are you saying if not this should be the law?

  8. Tommy_a2b says:

    Erick, the 1st issue is a typo in your post. There is no law requiring a helmet to ride a motorcycle. This is the flaw in the original bill. The bill requires protective covering with no definition of what is protective covering. Multiple riders I know (I do not own or have I ever owned a motorcycle) have letters from judges saying as long as they are wearing something on their head then they can not be fined. Just thought you would want to know that the bill that is trying to be passed is to remove the requirment to wear baseball caps while riding.

  9. Rick Day says:

    If Helmets are ‘the legal answer” to “motorcycle safety” then why aren’t we wearing them while riding cars? What is the total deaths of people driving/passenger in CARS vs motorcycles. If you want to ‘do something’ to ‘save people’, why not impose mandatory helmet use in a 4 wheel vehicle?

    Lets see how YOU feel being forced by a stupid nanny-state law to go through the motions of pretending to ‘promote public safety’.

    Also, the “burden of head trauma on taxpayers” is a myth. According to ER statistics (too busy to find them now) 50% of all motorcycle riders lack health insurance, with an average medical burden of $10,000 per injured rider (a simple gall bladder surgery costs about twice that).

    The average car injured individual with no medical insurance? About 50%. Um, only there are many more cars than motorcycles.

    Choice. Please, as a rider I beg you to give us CHOICE when it comes to OUR safety equipment.

    Seat belt laws suck. How did the boomers EVER live to multiply as they do now back in the day when there were no ‘mandatory’ seat belt use?

    You want to REALLY save lives? Ban driving. Sheesh.

    Out of my life, Nanny!

  10. StevePerkins says:

    I tend to agree with Rick. The government will pretty much try to control every aspect of our lives that it can, except (sometimes) for areas where lack of compliance will be overwhelming. For example, I don’t see the government requiring helmets in 4-wheel passenger vehicles because most people would simply ignore the law.

    Smart or dumb, there are a LOT of motorcycle enthusiasts who hate or refuse to wear helmets. Ben Roethlisberger, fresh off a Super Bowl victory, had a no-helmet crash in the off-season… and said that he STILL didn’t want to wear helmets. Of course, I think that’s retarded (I think riding a motorcycle at all in the first place is retarded), but it takes all kinds.

    I don’t see a problem here, or with seat belts, that the market could not correct. For one thing, there should absolutely be no restrictions in lawsuits against introducing lack of seat belt or helmet usage into evidence. If your injuries were worse because you didn’t use reasonable safety equipment, then the defendant shouldn’t have to pay that additional amount of damages. Secondly, auto and health insurance companies should be able to charge different rates for people who pledge to use seat belts or helmets. If you pay the lower rate, but then get caught without using the safety equipment, then you forgo coverage for that accident. I agree with the “social contract” argument that helmet-free riders shouldn’t jack up my rates… but if they want to pay their own higher rates for the ability to ride as they see fit, then I wouldn’t have a problem with that as it wouldn’t affect me.

  11. DMZDave says:

    I’m guessing there’s a direct correlation between people who are too dumb to wear helmets and people who are too stupid to buy medical insurance. Unfortunately we don’t have the freedom to leave stupid people on the side of the road and so we pay and pay and pay for these stupid people. That is what gives us the right to say “hey idiot, put on your damn helmet, I can’t afford to pay for your stupidity and I’m guessing you can’t either.”

  12. Rick Day says:

    That is what gives us the right to say “hey idiot, put on your damn helmet, I can’t afford to pay for your stupidity and I’m guessing you can’t either.”

    Please cite the Constitutional right you have to mandate questionable safety devices, that supersedes my constitutional right of choice.

    Thanks!

    and 70 mpg is NOT retarded, Steve (grins). If more ‘retards’ rode 2 wheels and less ‘morons’ drove 4 wheels, think of the road use savings, pollution, use of HOV. etc….

    PS: wearing a helmet while riding a small engine scooter from my home to Publix is what is REALLY retarded.

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