A couple of weeks ago, the Norwich Common Council discussed the possibility of adding more of those pedestrian crossing signs to Broad Street, in an effort to make drivers stop for people walking in the cross walks. This would be a great idea if the things actually worked, but in my opinion they don’t. Yesterday I was driving through town and I saw that another pedestrian crossing sign has indeed been added, and the jerks who drive through town are ignoring it completely.
In my opinion, there are two types of people who don’t stop for people in the cross walk. The first type are the insensitive and rude jerks who don’t care if your carrying an armful of groceries, trying to control a couple unruly children and still took the time to walk to the cross walk and wait for the go light, they’re still not going to let you pass, because, frankly, they stink. I hate those people, because they’re rude and lack common decency, but the other type might be even worse.
Yesterday I saw a woman with a stroller almost get run down by some moron in a pick-up truck. I guess it’s possible that he didn’t see the sign, or the cross walk, or the woman walking with her baby in stroller since he was talking on his cell phone, smoking a cigarette and driving a stick shift. Who can be bothered by such little details? I know sometimes when I’m painting my toe nails and dying my hair and filing my taxes while driving, I don’t notice the little things either.
I’ll admit that I occasionally answer my phone when I’m in the car. I know I shouldn’t, but once in a while, everyone breaks a rule here or there. The difference is that in these instances I keep my calls to a minimum and try to pay attention to what’s going on around me. I’m not steering with my knees, so I can text message all of my friends about the latest thing to catch my attention and I’m not so oblivious to my surroundings that I’m nearly running people down on the streets.
So my point is, until people become a little more responsible and offer up some common decency, I don’t think a little sign that says yield to pedestrians is going to help.