By now, most if not all area students are back in school. Besides ensuring that our youth receive a quality education, our state rightfully places strong emphasis on keeping our kids safe. Public safety is the most important responsibility that state government has, and for young people that means not only striving to maintain safe schools, but also safe roadways.
The bill passed with overwhelming support in both the House and Senate, but some people have addressed concerns. One common argument dealt with how effectively the law could be enforced. Of course, as with any law, there is no way to catch every violator. But many of us can remember when wearing a seatbelt was not mandated by state law. Today, the state mandates that drivers and passengers wear seatbelts, and about 85 percent of Ohioans wear them.
Others brought up an infringement of personal freedoms. But it is important to consider the personal freedoms that are put at risk when someone texts while driving. The lives of drivers coming down the other side of the road are jeopardized whenever fellow drivers are distracted behind the wheel. Those personal freedoms are also worth protecting.
We cannot prevent every accident on the road, but we can take responsible measures to make the roadways safer. Today, driver’s education instructors can tell their students that texting while driving is not only dangerous, but also illegal, which is something they could not say before just a few months ago.