Tuesday, August 14, 2007

The Irrationality of Rational Actions, Yet Again

That's not what I meant when I said "stupid pig."

So imagine you're a cop. Put down that doughnut and stop harassing black people! Stay with me for a minute here. Imagine you're a cop. You see a vehicle doing 57 mph in a 30 mph zone. So you put on your fuckin' blue lights and pull over the vehicle in question. You drag your sorry ass out of your cruiser and approach the truck. When you get there, you see that the passenger has a fucking nail in his head. But you also notice that he's not wearing a seatbelt. Because you're just so fucking magnanimous, you decide to waive the speeding ticket, and you follow the vehicle to the hospital, but you cite the passenger--again, who has a goddamn nail in his head--for not wearing his seatbelt.

Now imagine that you're an asshole, 'cause you would be if you'd done all of that.

This actually happened up in Canada. Check it out.
Docherty, a construction foreman, was accidentally hit by a co-worker's powerful nail gun last week.

A first-aid officer jumped in his vehicle and raced Docherty to the hospital, a couple of kilometres away. But about halfway there, the pair was stopped on Central Saanich Road by a police officer conducting a speed trap.

"We showed him the nail sticking out of my forehead but he didn't care at all," Docherty told A-Channel news yesterday.

The officer stopped the two for driving 92 km/h in a 50 km/h zone and for not wearing a seatbelt. They explained why they were in a rush but the "first-aid emergency" didn't seem to concern the officer.

"He was dead set on getting some tickets," said Docherty.

The police officer followed the two to the hospital and once there issued a seatbelt ticket.

A seatbelt fine in B.C. is $167 but is less costly than a speeding fine that would have amounted to more than $300, according to Central Saanich police Chief Paul Hames.

"I think the officer used his discretion with the two different tickets," Hames said.

The police chief suggested the pair should have called an ambulance, which is permitted in emergencies to drive at speeds higher than the posted limit.

The officer, who is on holidays, was acting according to the law, Hames said.

"My concern is for the safety of the public at large," the chief said. However, he will speak to the officer to gather "more detail from his perspective."

Hames said some will see the police officer's actions as "unreasonable" but he hopes that the majority will understand that excessive speeds on the Central Saanich road were a concern and that the police officer was simply doing his job.

"The public will see a nail in a forehead and [possibly] not see the other side of the story," Hames said.

Docherty was back on the job site the following day and apart from a headache and some dizziness immediately after the accident, is reportedly feeling fine now.

What an asshole. His chief is an asshole too. (If you were ever enlisted in the navy, that will come as no surprise.) I'm gonna go out on a limb here and say that there really isn't another side of the story. Seatbelt laws really shouldn't take precedence over big chunks of metal sticking out of heads. Just a thought.

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