Saturday, February 1, 2014

Police, Tickets, & Double Standards

I would really like to write this post ambiguously, but obviously I'm writing inspired by recent events so that just isn't going to happen. 

Utah Drivers. 
Everyone in Utah has an opinion about us. 
Whether you are originally from out of state like me, or a born and raised Utahn. 
Compared to Oregon the speed limit is much faster here. 
People drive more aggressively here. 
Cops are more lenient on pulling people over for speeding here.
Or are they?

Flash back to this last week when I was pulled over for speeding. Yes, I was going over the 65 mph speed limit, but who wasn't? 
Raise your hand if you always, without fail, drive 65 mph or below on the freeway. 
**Insert silence here** 
So where do police draw the line? Apparently it's a zig zag mess in Utah. The "standard" (I kid you not) is 75mph. That is ten over the speed limit. I have seen cops, who are ACTIVELY using their radar, just let cars going 75 mph fly by. 
Mind you, the cop that pulled me over was not using radar, to my knowledge. He was driving way in front of me. Somehow he clocked me going an exact speed. 
How is that possible?
 It doesn't matter though. I got a ticket and it's over. I could go to court and fight it but it's always going to be his word against mine. Guess who wins that battle?
 I'll give you a hint... not me. 

Some would say, "Just don't speed and you won't have a problem." 
 I am not writing this post to say speeding and essentially breaking the law is okay. 
Because it isn't. 
All I am trying to say is that there has to be a reason for police to pull people over/not pull people over at different times for committing the same crime. 
Whether the reason is filling monthly quotas, profiling, etc. I don't know. 
But there HAS to be a real standard though. Is this a letter of the law or spirit of the law type thing? 
Yes. But it cant be.
If the standard is 65mph like a court judge would tell you, then ENFORCE THAT all the time. Pull people over for going 72 mph all the time or don't do it at all. 
For whatever reason, police do not do that in Utah. 

So back to us as Utah drivers. Is this our fault for always driving 5-10 over the speed limit? Probably. In Oregon you will get pulled over for that every time. No questions asked. 
So why do we all speed here? Is it because we don't know any better? 
It's because the speed limit isn't enforced as a standard. 
We shouldn't need to be treated like children who get their hands slapped when we drive over the speed limit. But give us an inch and we will take a mile. 
Not all of us. But most of us. So when are we going to get punished for this inch or mile that we take?? We never know. It could be at 67 one day and 75 another. 

And that is my issue.

No comments:

Post a Comment