Last night the key question in Million Dollar Money Drop was “who gets more speeding tickets, men or women?” This question would not present a moment’s hesitation for me. I would have said men immediately, and I would have been right (and I could have won a lot of money!).
The couple on the show, Nathan and Lana also answered men, and they won $300,000 which was the highest amount awarded so far on the show. Host Kevin Pollak clued them in just before they answered that the right gender is also responsible for more seat belt violations and reckless violations. Again, not surprised.
I live in a very heavy traffic area in Brooklyn. The corner of my block alone is a war zone for pedestrians. If you stood at the corner and watched cars turning for just five minutes, you would see how many men drive recklessly here. To top it off, there is a school across the street and cars still do not yield to pedestrians. Once the light turns green, cars will turn and many without even hesitating, so people crossing the street are on their own. So while we all tell our children to cross with the green light, that is not always enough.
I see the same careless driving by my children’s school but more often than not, it’s the mothers who will yield. Women are more likely to stop and let people cross than men and I don’t know why. I understand that moms are probably more aware of kids crossing the street, but it shouldn’t be a gender issue. It’s a human issue.
Every year, more than 4,000 U.S. pedestrians die in car accidents, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. If the police would ticket every single driver who didn’t yield to a pedestrian, talked on their cell phone, or ran a red light, we would see accidents and deaths go down dramatically. It doesn’t happen though so people push the limits and get away with it.
It takes one split second of not paying attention to kill someone, to kill a child, to kill a mother. So what can we do? We can make it a point to drive more safely ourselves and we can encourage our husbands, brothers, and fathers to do the same. We can teach our kids when they reach driving age that texting and talking on the phone is never acceptable when driving. We have to tell our children that even though they might have the green light when crossing the street, they have to be vigilant about the cars that are turning and make sure that the driver sees them and stops before they take a step.
It’s a scary reality and every driver thinks it will never be me, but one second of inattention can change lives forever.