down with slow pokes folks

I was behind this annoyingly slow car a few days ago. At that speed, I noticed a bumper sticker:

Palo Alto Resident 
I drive safely.

Whatever! Driving safely doesn’t mean driving too slowly (10 mph below the speed limit).

I did a google search and found that it’s part of Palo Alto’s Pace Car program. http://www.cityofpaloalto.org/cityagenda/publish/cmrs/1787.pdf

Pace car drivers set a prudent pace for drivers following behind them. If they drive within the speed limit, the cars behind them will likely do the same.

That’s so stupid. If a car is going the speed limit, the cars behind it can’t always go the speed limit too if they are to maintain a safe distance between cars. Thus, people at the later end of the queue are not even able to go the speed limit just because the car at the front insists on following the speed limit.

Speed itself is not dangerous. I actually think slow drivers are more dangerous if they drive slowly because they are distracted and/or have slow reflexes. Car quality is crucial too. In Germany, where there is no speed limit on the Autobahn, drivers are required to keep their cars maintained well.

I like to walk fast, talk fast, and drive fast. I care about safety, but I disagree that ridiculously slow driving is any safer. They say that the speed limit is determined by various factors, including the abilities of average drivers. I don’t think it’s fair for incompetent drivers to dictate what I am able to do. In high school, I took calculus. What if society decided that we can’t have calculus because not everyone can handle it or want to take it?

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