How far is too far? How much is too much?

March 25, 2014

On April 1 the city of Greenville will put into place a ban on the use of mobile devices inside city limits, including GPS systems, texting, and cell phones while driving. It is the next step on the slippery slope of personal invasion by governmental edict.

Should you do all of these things while driving? No, but isn’t that more of a common sense decision? When did it become necessary to make rules and laws to keep us from being stupid? And when did it become the government’s job — local, state or federal — to take care of us from cradle to grave? It’s just this sort of thing that’s gumming up the works here on good old Mother Earth.

Because we have been blessed with the ability to use logic and reason, we think the laws of nature just don’t apply to us as they do to the rest of the animal kingdom, but that’s just pride nibbling at the nape of your neck. Fact is, other than being blessed with reasoning, there’s no difference between us and the rest. The world is beginning to show the wear and tear of our hubris.

People are living longer, healthier lives, and in an abstract thought, that’s a great thing, but at some point the herd has to cull itself. There are only so many resources available for so many people and while that may sound cold, it is a fact. While the population boom continues, the natural resources available dwindle.

Vaccines, medical advances, eradication of disease are all wonderful things. I have children of my own and like any other parent don’t want to see them suffer from Polio or some other dreaded illness, but sooner or later there has to be a line in the sand when it comes to certain actions, and one of those actions is comprised of poor decisions.

We all want to live forever, and while that’s an enviable goal, the fact is none of us will no matter how many laws are passed requiring seatbelts, helmets, or hands-free driving. When it comes to people and the making of poor choices you will never legislate away an American’s right to be an idiot.

So, in my ever humble opinion, if you don’t want to wear a seat belt, or you want to text and drive, or God forbid you choose to not wear a bike helmet, and something happens, well, you were blessed with common sense and knew better. If you do it and kill someone else, you deserve to go to jail, period.

And that’s just what it comes down to: common sense and that’s just not something you can legislate.

D. C. Moody is a staff writer for The Easley Progress, The Pickens Sentinel and Powdersville Post and can be reached at Views expressed in this column are those of the writer only and do not represent the newspaper’s opinion.