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LETTER: Don’t trivialize ban on texting while driving

Mitchell,South Dakota 57301 http://www.mitchellrepublic.com/sites/all/themes/mitchellrepublic_theme/images/social_default_image.png
Mitchell South Dakota 120 South Lawler 57301
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To the Editor:

Since studies consistently show that the risk of an accident is at least as high for a texting driver as one who is drunk, let us see how the texting ban bill shapes up if it were applied to drunk driving.

Drunk driving is a misdemeanor punishable by a $25 fi ne, and no local jurisdiction can enact an ordinance regulating drunk driving.

Police offi cers cannot pull a driver over solely on suspicion of drunk driving, cannot administer breathalyzer testing and cannot seize open bottles in the vehicle.

Proponents of the bill do have a point in that no law, no matter how draconian the penalties it carries, can change behavior without a change in culture. However, no advertising campaign will have any effect on the culture if the behavior to be changed is trivialized — and that is just what the current bill does.

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