There are many reasons for disliking red light cameras. You can come to the conclusion that they actually make intersections less safe. You can believe that they are a money-making scam. You can find that the yellow light timing is unreasonably short, and sets you up for the ticket. You can understand that the system reverses the usual American approach of assuming innocence by assuming instead that you are guilty. You can even be outraged that favored drivers don’t have to pay tickets, shown in the CBS story last month. There are many reasons you can choose to be against red-light cameras, and you can take your pick. (Kudos to Ron Wright, the Tarrant County Tax Assessor-Collector, for refusing to act as Arlington’s bill collector with regard to red light cameras!)
Personally, I hate red light cameras, not because I like running red lights, but because I despise getting a ticket in the mail for turning right on red at Cooper and Pioneer and failing to convince my faceless (and merciless) accuser that I was driving properly. I also deplore the continued mechanical decision-making in our lives which is demonstrated by the disappearing yield sign, and robotic system that accuses, prosecutes, and judges, and makes the fleecing of city residents far too easy.
Of course, the engineer in me also hates the wasted energy demanded by an unnecessary full-bore stop of a moving car just to satisfy the mere color of a light, irrespective of whether an actual car is on a collusion course with my intended path.
But you don’t have to just put up with this. You don’t have to take it any more. YOU can do something besides rant (although that can be fun too).
There is a petition going round to put the issue on the ballot which you can sign. We can join a number of cities around the country, and 15 states, which have decided against the continued would-be tyranny of the camera (and the city councils who love the increased income), and get rid of this system.
To assist in this effort, please print off the petition, and go up and down your block to fill it out, and then return it to the organizers at the address on the bottom of the petition sheet. (Registered voters only, but they’ll look up your voter info.)
Norred Law has had nothing to do with this effort, except that you can come by and sign the petition at our office at Suite 300, 200 E. Abram. But we applaud those who are doing this work, wish them all the best, and hope you will join the team. We need about 10k petitions, and the sooner that the petitions are gathered, the sooner they can be confirmed, and the more time that is available to handle any legal issues that may come up. So print, sign, and turn in your petition this week!
– Warren Norred