It seems like every newspaper contains a story on guns and violence. Most of us read it and consider it a foreign concept. But every time we hop into our cars and trucks, we are taking on the role of an assailant.
Around 40,000 Americans will die in an automobile crash this year, and 4.5 million will have their lives dramatically altered from a serious injury incurred in a crash.
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If we choose to drive, we cannot forget that we are operating a loaded weapon and must be mindful of the consequences. Whether we encounter pedestrians, bike riders or our neighbors on the road, we must relax and drive in a controlled and conservative manner. Just because traffic violence doesn't make the headlines, that does not mean it isn't happening.
Automobile companies spend around $52 on every man, woman and child each year to advertise new cars. Our intimate love affair with our cars and trucks is the reason that our community does not approach the topic of traffic violence.
Our lack of foresight has us painting bike lanes and touting our safe pedestrian crossings instead of taking on the real problem. Cars and trucks need to be removed from the heart of Madison, and a "people-first" approach to transportation needs to take shape.
Ian Klepetar, Madison