Re: Police seize speed racer bike, News, April 20, 2012.
The recent YouTube posting of a motorcycle weaving at high speed through traffic on the Trans-Canada Highway is indeed evidence of dangerous driving, and, when caught, the rider will no doubt be heavily fined and sanctioned.
However, the rush to condemn that rider’s actions ignores the less obvious, but just as troubling, failures of judgment by other drivers.
In early February of this year in Delta a woman swerved her car to avoid some ducks and lost control of her car, which then plunged into a water-filled ditch.
Her son was the only person able to escape the partially submerged vehicle, and at age six bravely made his way to the road and flagged down a passing car. The happy ending was that all were saved.
Consider that this event, described many times over the days that followed, contained not one comment regarding this woman’s behaviour as a driver. Her reaction at the wheel, in foolishly and recklessly swerving the vehicle beyond its capabilities, caused a loss of control which endangered her own life and the lives of her children.
Unlike the motorcycle incident, a crash did occur. Had that crash been only slightly more violent, the three of them would be dead. And not a word has been said about the mother’s lack of judgment or lack of skill that resulted in the crash.
She has received pity for very nearly killing her own children. The motorcycle rider will no doubt be vilified.
As a professional driver for almost 40 years, who has witnessed nearly every act of stupidity possible on public roads, I do not share that pity. It seems, though, that society is hypocritical in its assessment of responsibility.