I know that I’ve walked down this road before, but things have gotten worse, so I can’t keep my mouth shut. Cell phones have always annoyed me—well, let me rephrase that—people using cell phones without an ounce of respect or etiquette or consciousness of the law annoy me. It’s not the technology that troubles me, it’s the irresponsible use. No matter where you go, no matter what you do, cell phones are taking over the world. And it’s reached the point where people no longer attach their cells to their belts or carry them in their purses. No, everyone holds them in their hands as if they were waiting for the results of a biopsy.
Why is it so damned urgent to keep in touch with friends and families 24/7? Do we all need to know every little detail of their lives as if it was a matter of life and death? And what’s even more annoying than talking nonsense on cell phones is my all-time favorite activity: Text messaging. Whoever invented this ought to be tarred and feathered.
Wouldn’t it be nice to pull an envelope out of your mailbox, tear it open, and find a handwritten letter from a close friend or relative? Can you even remember the last time you received a personal letter? Text messaging and talking on cell phones have removed the intimacy from our communications. Even though we can literally reach anyone at anytime, there seems to be a great distance between people.
In the state of California, it is illegal to talk on a cell phone while driving, unless through a hands-free device, and it’s illegal to text under any circumstances. In spite of this, you can stand on any busy street corner in CA and watch dozens of drivers pressing a cell phone to their ears and just as many with their heads down, texting. And where are the cops? Want to stop this insanity? Make the law more severe. Right now, the fine for illegal use of a cell phone is $20 for the first offense and $50 for subsequent convictions. Are you kidding me? How about $500 for the first offense and a suspended license for the second offense?
Statistically, it is documented that a growing number of auto accidents can be directly attributed to cell phone use or texting. And in many cases, people have been killed. My wife has a great solution to this growing problem. All auto manufacturers should be required to install an electronic device on all motor vehicles that blocks any cell phone signal while the engine is running. I think this is a great idea! Yes, I know, big brother already lives in our back pockets, but if we have to forfeit some of our rights to save lives, so be it. I’m on-board.