Cyclist Bradley Nakatani was killed in Kirkland yesterday, less than five months after a John Przychodzen was killed on Juanita Drive. I’ve been reading about Bradley Nakatani and he sounds like an incredible guy.
Unfortunately, I also just read that the reckless driver who killed John Prezychodzen was fined $42 for an “unsafe lane change”. That’s just infuriating. Honestly, it doesn’t matter to me whether the driver was stoned, intoxicated, on the cell phone, yelling at his passenger, or just a horrible driver, if he endangers someone’s life, he needs to pay a steep penalty (monetary or otherwise). Until we, as a society, stop giving a free pass to such horrible driving behavior, the needless carnage will continue.
Driving is not a right, driving a privilege. I know that’s a cliché, but really think about what that means. A driver is hurling a 3500 pound chunk of machinery down a road inches away from unprotected pedestrians and cyclists—that’s scary! They probably wouldn’t let someone other than a professional stuntman do something like that on a Hollywood studio, yet it happens every day on the roads in America and every day people die because of it.
Take away people’s right to drive when they screw up. Illegal lane change? Remove their license for a week. People don’t need cars and it’s time our laws reflect that.