Let's Save Daredevils From Themselves

The scene County currents and undercurrents

September 19, 1990|By Gary Lambrecht

While traveling west on Interstate 70 not too long ago, I glanced in my rearview mirror as I prepared to switch lanes to pick up the eastbound U.S. 40 exit.

Then, a thought came to me as a frightening sight closed in.

There they were, two people maybe in their early 20s, having what appeared to be a blast. He was driving and she was the passenger on a motorcycle whisking them along the asphalt at -- judging by my speed of 65 miles per hour and the rate at which they were gaining on me -- a velocity of somewhere in the neighborhood of 80.

As they weaved dangerously in fairly heavy traffic, I wondered why they didn't display a bit more brains.

By this time I could see neither of them was wearing a helmet. I then thought of their brains again -- this time what they might look like on the pavement.

Then another thought occurred to me.

Somewhere soon in Howard County, some eighth-grader will be "caught" by a police officer for pedaling his three-speed bicycle around the corner from his house without a helmet. That child will be cited, in accordance with the county's recently passed law that forbids youth under 16 from operating a bicycle on public roads without a helmet.

And yet in Howard County and the rest of the state of Maryland nothing can stop those two irresponsible motorcyclists from killing themselves, which happens often when people wreck their bikes while traveling at posted speeds, let alone excessive rates.

I'm not sure I have the brains to figure this one out.

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