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A Bill to Ban Headphones While Crossing Street

By - Source: Crunchgear | B 42 comments

What's next? A ban on texting while walking in the mall?

With the hard work of persistent lawmakers, texting and using cell phones without the use of hands free headsets have become illegal while driving. The obvious reasoning behind the legislation was due to safety concerns and an increased number of accidents from distracted drivers. According to the New York Times, a bill is now in circulation that calls for a ban on cell phones, ipods and just about any handheld device while crossing the street.

Considering the millions of people around the country that like to listen to their mp3 players while jogging and exercising, this bill may be going a bit overboard. In a world that is becoming increasingly dependent on smartphones and new technology, many advocates of this bill would argue people are becoming more detached from the real world around them. Although this may be partially true, we don't think it has gotten to the point where joggers are throwing themselves at moving vehicles because they are too busy rocking out to The Grateful Dead.

Legislation regarding texting and distractions while driving are much more understandable due to the fact that drivers are operating a very heavy vehicle that could cause some serious damage. It is completely the government's business to prevent a texting driver from plowing into a crowded group of people, but when we are in control of our own bodies, the only person we are putting directly at risk is ourselves. Banning the use of cell phones and ipods while crossing the street is no different than banning a dangerous sport such as racing and boxing.

State Senator Carl Kruger, the bill's main proponent states:

We’re taught from knee-high to look in both directions, wait, listen and then cross. You can perform none of those functions if you are engaged in some kind of wired activity.

Although the senator may not be able to look in both directions while focused on trying to figure out the complicated device that is an ipod in his hands, we're full confident that our readers and a majority of the population have no problems with this. We've personally yet to see somebody mindlessly cross the street into a horde of oncoming cars. In addition to the impracticality of this law, it is not likely to be easily enforced and would probably cause more trouble than it solves.

With the number of accidents that occur due to texting or distractions while driving, it is recognizable that technology can play its part, but what's more important is to focus on a balance between connectivity with personal tech devices and keeping ourselves and those around us safe. These types of decisions and responsibilities should be taken on by the individual and not the government.

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  • 5 Hide
    speedemon , January 28, 2011 12:14 AM
    Right because walking across a street while texting is very dangerous... you could walk into a car that has its brakes applied.
    How bout making it illegal to use a cellphone while walking in a mall.. you know because of all those fountains.. might just walk into one...
    ...
  • 4 Hide
    LuckyDucky7 , January 28, 2011 12:21 AM
    "We’re taught from knee-high to look in both directions, wait, listen and then cross. You can perform none of those functions if you are engaged in some kind of wired activity."

    Yes you can, actually- it's called "listening with one earbud out". You can look in both directions, listen, and cross. Even if you can't listen, you probably aren't going to get run over- you just have to be alert and at least mostly aware of how many cars are coming down the street at you.

    If this bill only applied to texting, I can see it passing. I don't want to pay for your broken arm because you walked into a lamp post or cushions for telephone poles- case in point: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=807vebt-mmQ

    But if this bill in its current form were to succeed, what's next? A prohibition of carrying on a conversation with the person next to you? A fine for humming your favorite tune while walking down the street?
  • 2 Hide
    LuckyDucky7 , January 28, 2011 12:22 AM
    Also, @ speeddemon, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mg11glsBW4Y
  • Display all 42 comments.
  • 4 Hide
    thesupermedium , January 28, 2011 12:33 AM
    This world is a sad sad place...
  • 0 Hide
    Supertrek32 , January 28, 2011 12:39 AM
    Don't you love where our taxes are going?
  • 6 Hide
    enforcer22 , January 28, 2011 1:09 AM
    Darwin says let him die.
  • 2 Hide
    tehmoonrulz , January 28, 2011 1:13 AM
    Never been a fan of proposed laws because some dumbass was trying to douggie while crossing the street
  • 4 Hide
    queenweb , January 28, 2011 1:19 AM
    Looks like the gen pool needs chlorinating again!!!
  • 0 Hide
    killerclick , January 28, 2011 1:29 AM
    Damn nanny state. The Marxist Kenyan Muslim wants to take away my right to walk into a 5 ton truck. I want my country back! And low taxes... and guns in church...
  • 1 Hide
    mayankleoboy1 , January 28, 2011 1:36 AM
    FAIL
  • 2 Hide
    ik242 , January 28, 2011 1:55 AM
    sigh....
  • -3 Hide
    ben850 , January 28, 2011 2:30 AM
    speedemonRight because walking across a street while texting is very dangerous... you could walk into a car that has its brakes applied.How bout making it illegal to use a cellphone while walking in a mall.. you know because of all those fountains.. might just walk into one......


    Retarded statement.

    Pedestrians are unpredictable, and so are motorists. Pedestrians need the exact same rules as people driving vehicles IMO. Just because the little picture changes to the guy "walking" does not mean you should cross the street. People run red lights and stop signs all the time.
  • 0 Hide
    flugelhorn , January 28, 2011 3:54 AM
    Actually, according to the Insurance industry, despite the increasing texting issues, there has been NO increase in the number of accidents/fatalities. I think its ignorant to text while behind the wheel, but its simply one more distraction amongst a sea of distractions. If it isn't texting, then it's something else.

    The government has no business legislating headphones.
  • 1 Hide
    mrnasty000 , January 28, 2011 4:08 AM
    If you are stupid enough (mostly young people) to have something that retards your ability to identify noise, covering your ears, you deserve whatever happens to you. My father would have put foot up my butt 30 years ago, had he seen or heard that I was doing such a stupid thing.
  • 1 Hide
    speedemon , January 28, 2011 4:20 AM
    LuckyDucky7Also, @ speeddemon, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mg11glsBW4Y


    glad you saw it too :) 
  • 2 Hide
    speedemon , January 28, 2011 4:25 AM
    ben850Retarded statement. Pedestrians are unpredictable, and so are motorists. Pedestrians need the exact same rules as people driving vehicles IMO. Just because the little picture changes to the guy "walking" does not mean you should cross the street. People run red lights and stop signs all the time.


    This is true, so lets ban headphones/ipods while crossing the street? durr more control please
  • 0 Hide
    mrnasty000 , January 28, 2011 4:27 AM
    If you are stupid enough (mostly young people) to have something that retards your ability to identify noise, covering your ears, you deserve whatever happens to you. My father would have put foot up my butt 30 years ago, had he seen or heard that I was doing such a stupid thing.
  • 2 Hide
    dirgle , January 28, 2011 7:39 AM
    ben850Retarded statement. Pedestrians are unpredictable, and so are motorists. Pedestrians need the exact same rules as people driving vehicles IMO. Just because the little picture changes to the guy "walking" does not mean you should cross the street. People run red lights and stop signs all the time.


    Yes! This is a great idea, And while we're at it why don't continue to create and enforce draconian laws that control every aspect of individual lives. Because every individual is inherently dangerous, and must be controlled and governed to bring order and peace to an otherwise chaotic world.

    Resistance is futile.
  • -1 Hide
    Anonymous , January 28, 2011 8:57 AM
    "the only person we are putting directly at risk is ourselves"

    That is a load of rubbish. Although it is highly likely you will come out worse off than anyone else, walking out in front of traffic can cause operators of those vehicles to lose control and trigger further accidents. The opinion that you are only endangering yourself is naive at best, and the comparison with racing and boxing is pointless - both are environments where people expect accidents or injury to occur, so forcing accidents onto other people is not as much of a problem. I don't expect people to drag me into accidents while driving because they are happy with themselves they think only they are going to be affected.

    That said, I don't agree with the idea of the bill - completely unenforceable.
  • 1 Hide
    peanutsrevenge , January 28, 2011 10:58 AM
    The funniest thing of that idiots statement is that people can't "wait" while engaged in a "wired activity". BRILLIANT.

    However, I now await the deaf community suing him for insinuating they're incapable of crossing the road due to their inability to listen!

    I always have my sound deadening ear buds in when walking around and crossing the road, I can look both ways and wait for a gap in the traffic before crossing.

    I'm glad I'm not American if that's the direction your senators are STILL taking!
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