Living in an Idiocracy

Sometimes I consider renaming my blog to Living in an Idiocracy. I continue to be amazed, or really dismayed, at the lack of basic intelligence held by my fellow Americans. The problem is that the idiocy doens’t stop at inconsequential matters, it involves matters of significant consequence as well:

The most important safety feature on your car isn’t its airbag or even the seat belts—it’s the tires. This should be obvious; those four round black things are the only part of the vehicle to actually touch the road, after all. Sadly, most American drivers fail to take care of their tires, with 35 percent of drivers not able to tell if their tires are bald. When you consider that the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration found that vehicles with worn out tires were three times more likely to end up in a crash, you can see the problem.

Checking to see if your tires have a safe amount of tread on them isn’t difficult. Tires include a convenient built-in mechanism to determining your tires’ tread depth. Tread depth gauges can also be acquired for a song and if even that is too expensive for you, you can use something like a coin to determine if your tires need to be replaced.

The fact that motorists can get a license without learning that their tires need to be replaced periodically is astounding to me. How can somebody get through 16 years of their life without having known somebody who got the tires on their vehicle replaced and at least developed the curiosity to ask why they replaced their tires? The level of ignorance seems to require a willful commitment.

Honestly, if advocates of mass transit want a catchphrase for their campaigns they could do worse than, “Mass transit. Because you’re too stupid to be trusted with your own vehicle.”

2 thoughts on “Living in an Idiocracy”

  1. I have to wonder how much the lack of tread on tires is the major contributing factor to those crashes, or if it is more an indicator of a person who does not pay attention to the condition of their vehicle in general leading to other additional unsafe operating condition and more troubles.

  2. They should probably make a standard part of getting a drivers license be to show you know how to measure tread depth at least by using the penny method, and can you check your oil so we don’t have the stinky oil burning cars driving around, if we are going to police so much about driving at least go all the way with it.

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