By Chris Bunton
Let’s look at Safe Traffic Stops.
Do you like getting pulled over by the cops? Nobody does.
It’s going to cost you money and time.
It causes anxiety and real fear in some people.
For many it’s called “Driving while Black”
So, I would like to suggest a solution to a problem that costs lives, and creates terrible social division every year. That problem is the traffic stop, and the issues associated with it.
We’ve all experienced it. We are driving down the road, living our life, when suddenly a cop is behind us. We immediately start driving as perfectly as we can. We start running through what we might have done wrong or what we are going to say. And for some of us, this happens even before they turn on the lights.
So, let’s be honest. A lot of traffic stops are based upon very simple violations. They are things such as, going a few miles over the speed limit or not coming to a complete stop at a stop sign. They also include having broken lights, or having lights out above the license plate. It includes seat belt violations, improper lane usage, and other such things. I am not talking about major crimes, or dangerous situations here. I’m speaking of your normal everyday occurrence.
But, when we consider how many traffic stops turn into fights, shootings, or accidents which can get a cop or citizen hurt or killed, it might be a good idea to rethink this outdated mode of policing.
Because is it really worth it, to pull a person over for speeding, then allow it to escalate to a shooting where a person loses a life? Then, that situation escalates to where entire communities are in an uproar and property is destroyed, along with divisions that last for a very long time? Is a speeding ticket worth it?
In today’s world, we have the technology to reduce traffic stops to only very serious situations. This will save lives, and reduce the stress on our communities.
So, here’s my solution. We stop pulling people over.
Here’s an example, let’s say a cop is sitting watching a stop sign that is notorious for people running it. He sees a lady run it. So, he gets behind the lady, just like he is going to pull her over. But instead, he takes a picture of the license plate and sends her a ticket in the mail. Easy peasy. He does not pull her over at all.
Let’s say a cop sees a speeder. He gets behind them, takes a picture of the license plate and sends them a ticket in the mail. No arguing. No lying. No fighting. No shooting. It’s just simple, easy, done.
We could even stream line it to where it’s done very quickly electronically and even sent by email. No more filling out reports by the side of the road. No more getting shot or hit by a car. Just take a picture, then tell the computer the violation and bam, the vehicle owner is sent a ticket. We could even set up a device on the police cruiser that does it all, with one click.
We do this with stop light cams and toll booth cams. There is no reason to risk lives for traffic stops. All arguing and lying and legal battles can be done through the mail, email, and court. Not on the side of the road.
The ticket will go to the owner of the vehicle and it is the owner’s problem to get money from whoever was driving or not. The driver sends a picture of a valid driver’s license, and insurance, or because of our newly acquired technology, we could actually have that info in a computer on record already. So, there should be no reason for the citizen to show proof of these things.
So, what is the trade off? Well, there might be fewer criminals caught. Traffic stops are very useful for catching people who have warrants, or people who are possibly breaking laws.
However, I do not think that we would have a crime wave if we suddenly stop pulling people over in their cars for speeding, or not using their turn signal.
As a matter of fact, what I am suggesting would help cops to focus on those dangerous situations and real felonies.
Is it worth it to pull over 50 people, never knowing which one will shoot you, or which one might make you shoot them, just so you can catch a guy with a trunk full of cocaine? Or catch a guy with a gun in the glove box? I’m not certain that every traffic stop produces a serial killer, or a member of the cartel.
Imagine how peaceful it would be for a police officer to just pull up behind a speeding car. Click a few buttons, to issue the ticket, and then go have lunch. No arguing. No lies. No headaches. It would just be a peaceful day.
So, I think that no pull over traffic stops, is the best thing for our communities and our future. We have the technology. It will save lives. It will save time, and possibly money. It will prevent community outrage and resentments. It will reduce police stress.
Let’s get it done.
Bio: Chris Bunton is a Writer, Poet and Blogger from Southern Illinois.
Photo by the Author, Pittsburgh at Night.
2 thoughts on “Safe Traffic Stops”
I don’t mind this in theory but my only concern would be for people who are driving erratically because they’re either drunk/high. If a police officer sees them and lets them go because they’ll issue a ticket later, imagine the uproar if they crash 5 minutes later and kill someone. The flipside is this can lead to the driver speeding off and driving even worse out of fear of getting caught, but in saying that, I know different countries/states etc., can have different rules around whether police should pursue these people or not. No matter which way you go, it’s a complex issue :/
I can appreciate your view. But, we are not talking about those types of situations. We already do this with traffic light cams. What if every person who ran a red light was a drunk who kills someone down the road? Or if every person who runs a toll, was a drunk who couldn’t figure out what to do? It should not be that every person who gets pulled over is considered a drunk. We are supposed to be considered innocent till proven guilty. There are times when a person would need to be pulled over. But, not every time. We could set some rules that would warrant a pull over.