Monday, September 7, 2009

Encouraging Lawfulness

Clip art courtesy of Open Clip Art Gallery, public domain

On Interstate 405 in Kirkland, Washington, there is a sign by the 8-lane freeway saying "Keep Right Except to Pass." It should be no surprise that ABSOLUTELY NO ONE takes that sign seriously.

I called a friend from Massacheuttsets on his cellphone. He apparently was driving. When I found out this I asked him, "isn't that illegal in your state?" And he casually said, "yeah but it's minor." By the way, this friend wants to be a preacher. That kinda means you should respect the law. (Read Romans 13, and other passages.)

In every state I've known there are so many laws on the roadways that no one (including the cops, by the way) takes all of them seriously. This is bad. I don't like people lane changing without turn signals, especially if they're not going the same speed I am and I end up REAR-ENDING them! Or they don't look to their side and they SIDE-SWIPE me. And I don't like the idea of being a pedestrian and run over and killed by a grumpy driver whose had it for the day and now wasted my life.

I also don't especially like stupid laws. They make you wonder who's running this country. Are they even paid? Where did we hire these people? WHY did we hire these people? Was it their first day? And why shouldn't I trust all the other people who come up with laws and behaviors of their own? I sometimes wonder whether corporate accounting scandals happen because businesses get tired of the Eco-lobby. Reminds me of annoying cashiers who can't count money.

Fact of the matter is, we need law. We need it to protect our property, ourselves, our children, our country against foreign invasion. We also, at times, need it to deal with collective needs, like for commerce and transportation, though here we have to be more careful, as there is always a tremendous cost to making something collective, whether it be month-long hospital waits (Canada's Healthcare System) or putting privatized mass-transit out of business and the tragedy of too many people using something free at once (America's Interstate Freeway). In both cases, legalism and collectivism, there is a cost and a benefit, always, and both must be carefully weighed.

But if we do well with these, and create things that are limited, respectful, uncorrupt, freedom-oriented, and logical, and combine them with strong-enforcement and a sense of justice, we CAN have a lawful nation.Drawn from Indiana DOT Sign by Wikimedia user "Overpush", Public Domain

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