Wednesday, February 28, 2018

Boycott the National Pedestrian Association

It is a good thing there is not a National Pedestrian Association (NPA).

It would be under vicious attack right now by the mainstream media and the liberal left.

Pedestrian deaths in the United States have risen to unacceptable levels. It would be unconscionable for any organization to be standing up for the rights of pedestrians considering the carnage that we are seeing on or about the nation's roads.

The Wall Street Journal reported recently that the last two years have seen almost 6,000 pedestrian deaths nationwide.  Let's put that number in context---that is over 16 people each and every day.

The National Rifle Association is under relentless attack right now after 17 were killed in the Parkland school shooting recently and 374 homicides were committed by rifles last year. 16 times that number of pedestrians were killed last year.

What is most troubling is that the number of pedestrian deaths has been increasing dramatically the last few years. In fact, pedestrian deaths have not been so high since 1983.

As recently as 2009 there were only 4,109 pedestrian deaths in the United States. This means that there has been almost a 50% increase in pedestrian deaths in the last eight years.

This is also despite the fact that deaths in automobile accidents have generally been on a steady decline since the early 1970's.

Motor Vehicle Deaths by Year
Credit:Wikipedia Commons

When you look at motor vehicle deaths based on miles driven the improvements in safety are even more dramatic.

Credit:Wikipedia Commons

Looking at these statistics it almost seems as if pedestrians are under attack. After all, they are defenseless crossing or walking along our roads while drivers in the those cars are safely ensconsed in their vehicle complete with seat belts, air bags and a ton of steel.

What is even more troubling about pedestrian deaths is that the deaths are disproportionately coming from males in the population. It looks like a prima facie case of discrimination.

70% of pedestrian deaths are males.

Children are also disproportionately the victims in pedestrian accidents.

21% of pedestrian deaths are children 14 years age or younger.

Where is the outrage? 75 times the number of children will be killed this year as they walk the streets in the United States as were killed in Parkland school shootings.

Many of those will undoubtedly be walking to or from school.

None of this should mean that the school shootings should not receive the utmost attention and action.

However, as I often have written in these page, context is everything when assessing anything.

If you are finding yourself getting overly worked up for or against gun control or the 2nd Amendment and the news of the day, my advice to you would be to pay closer attention when you cross the street.

The odds are much greater that you will be hit by a vehicle than shot by a rifle.

You also would be wise to not be reading BeeLine as you are walking down the street.

I doubt it is a coincidence that the rise of pedestrian deaths closely correlates with the rise in smartphone usage.

Of course, it would be easier to blame the National Pedestrian Association!

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