How cars are killing us

June 7, 2008 at 6:54 pm

From Time magazine:

The average U.S. citizen completely ignores the regularity with which the automobile kills him, maims him, embroils him with the law and provides mobile shelter for rakes intent on seducing his daughters. He takes it into his garage as fondly as an Arab leading a prize mare into his tent. He woos it with Simoniz, Prestone, Ethyl and rich lubricants — and goes broke trading it in on something flashier an hour after he has made the last payment on the old one. …

By last week, this peculiar state of mind had not only sucked thousands of American oil wells dry, stripped the rubber groves of Malaya, produced the world’s most inhuman industry and its most recalcitrant labor union, but had filled U.S. streets with so many automobiles that it was almost impossible to drive one. In some big cities, vast traffic jams never really got untangled from dawn to midnight; the bray of horns, the stink of exhaust fumes, and the crunch of crumpling metal eddied up from them as insistently as the vaporous roar of Niagara. …

Congress and state legislatures had appropriated millions to build super highways on which speeders could kill themselves at higher speeds. The traffic light, the yellow line, the parking lot, the parking meter, the underground garage, the one-way street, the motorcycle cop and the traffic ticket had all blossomed amid the monoxide fumes—and traffic had gone right on getting thicker and noisier year by year.

Published in 1947.

— Photo by respres on Flickr. Hat tip: Jollyblogger


Entry filed under: Jon Swerens, Transportation.

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But seek the welfare of the city where I have sent you into exile, and pray to the LORD on its behalf, for in its welfare you will find your welfare. Jeremiah 29:7

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