Sunday, November 9, 2008

Slanted Helmet

When I was little, maybe ten or so, the law in my neighborhood changed so that every person under the age of 18 had to ride a helmet when riding a bicycle. My parents already made me wear a helmet, so the law didn't make much difference to me.

One day as I was biking around the park, a man with a notebook stopped me. He said he was a reporter and asked me what I thought about the new helmet law. I tried to use the most adult-sounding language I knew, and spoke to what I assumed was the adult point of view: I said it was a good law and it was a lot safer.

When the article came out in the paper a couple days later, I read through it to see if he'd quoted me, but he hadn't. In fact, he hadn't quoted anyone who thought the law was a good idea. The article was written to the people who didn't like the new law.

I kicked myself for a few minutes, wondering why I'd said what I thought he wanted to hear. "I should've just given him my real opinion," I thought. But then when I contemplated it further, I realized I had given him my real opinion: I did think helmets were safer, and it was a good law.

Having asserted my opinion to myself, I thus concluded that everyone quoted in the article was ignorant (yes, I know that's an arrogant conclusion--I was young, what can I say?), then continued on with my life.


Kathleen said...

Too bad you didn't follow up with a letter to the editor saying basically what your blog just did. I'm sick and tired of media slant.

ol' Bob said...

Media bias is so much fun. Just ask BHO.

As for the helmet business, I tend to favor wearing safety gear such as helmets and seat belts and to oppose laws that require the safety gear. It must be the bits of libertarian bubbling up through the conservative crust.

elegyrl said...

I think safety is amazing! I have seen what happens when one chooses to ignore the laws, over or under the age of 18!! Even before I went into EMS I always wore (and always will) a helmet when riding a bike. ALthough currently my bike and my helmet are waiting for some love again... and I am patiently (ok maybe a little impatiently) waiting for the day I can give that love to them again!

Veronica said...

Ok, I agree people are stupid. I hate that people here in Utah never wear their helmets whether they use a bike or a motorcycle or a scooter. Its just not safe. Why don't people use their brain?

Well, your right, Helmets are safe and it could save a lot of lives! It saves one of my friends life. Thank you to the person whom invented helmets. =)