To make jet fuel a refinery cracks pipeline crude once – the result is jet fuel and asphalt. This asphalt is then used in a number of ways but primarily to construct roads, or from this writer’s perspective, Killing Zones. Black ribbons devoid of life that enables massive machinery to charge around mindlessly running down anything in its path. Spewing toxic clouds and disrupting the peace, mankind’s greatest technological achievements in the form of private transportation have enslaved the people it was meant to serve with an addiction to cheap petroleum.
Imagine the ideal home for your family. Surely a top priority would be safety and isolation from the noise, pollution and danger posed by cars whizzing by. No one selects property with ‘Freeway Frontage” to live on! In fact, the distance from the front door to the nearest public roadway may be a measure of prosperity. The home is a peaceful retreat from the hustle and bustle of daily commerce.
Yet, we allow tons of steel to hurtle through our neighborhoods, often piloted by impaired, distracted, mindless people intent only on their mission, not the health and safety of others. Remember, over 4000 pedestrians are killed while tens of thousands are maimed for life every year by motor vehicles. ALL of them had the Right-of-Way simply by virtue of the fact that they were not in a motor vehicle. This clearly demonstrates a complete disregard for life – if it makes the error of wandering into the path of an oncoming motor vehicle, or if the WMD wanders off the road to run them down, well, that is just the cost of having motor vehicles.
Frankly, I am stunned at this attitude of indifference. Whenever I bring the topic up invariably the addict will quickly point out that some of the 4000 were drunken bums that wandered into the road – ok, so even if we dismiss the value of their life and human rights because they are drunken bums, what about the 10% killed and maimed that are children on their way to school?
What if a mad killer was loose in your neighborhood – we know the killer has a history of murder and mayhem and will soon kill or maim again. Wouldn’t the entire police and military force be out under Amber Alert to track down the monster?
Well I am telling you that monster may very well be you the next time you mindlessly enter a crosswalk or cross a line to race around someone. Because that is how it happens – most of the time people are in a hurry, racing to the next red light, and they may commit some minor infraction, such as crossing over the white line on the right side because a car in front of you is stopped to turn left, or driving into the sidewalk or crosswalk before making a turn into traffic. I am sure no one really ‘means’ to run a kid down with his or her personal 2 tons of comfort and ease, but it happens.
In fact, it happens THOUSANDS of times every day. This is not okay with me, and I resolve to do all I can to change the mindset that permits it – addiction to petroleum.