Self-Driving American

Imagine a world where free personal drivers are the norm.

We buy our own cars, but professional drivers operate them in every case. A few large agencies provide the licensed, trained, insured drivers at every destination and for delivery on demand to drive you wherever, whenever, whyever.

It costs a bit, but it’s paid out of our tax dollars, and it’s not terribly odd as a public service. Driving is dangerous, time consuming, a chore, and one additional responsibility we don’t have to worry about.

Accidents still happen, and the drivers’ agencies figure out who’s at fault between them and pay the appropriate parties. You don’t have to do anything; your car will be repaired, and you’ll have a replacement car in the meantime.

However, you’re not allowed to sue anyone for damages. Because they’re the trained professionals, and perfection is too much to ask.

In rare instances of more serious accidents, there is still no legal recourse to the seriously injured or the family of the deceased except in the cases of extreme or obvious negligence.

There’s no recompense one can receive to repair the loss of a limb or a loved one, but we accept whatever settlement the agencies determine is fair, and chalk it up to “stuff happens.” Again, demanding perfection is unrealistic.

What do you find wrong or unfair in the world that I’ve described?
What would you change about it, and with what argument?

Hold on to those criticisms, because with a slight change, most of us live in this world today.

Guns are expensive, dangerous, and a very large responsibility on a number of levels. It is unfathomably easier to just let the professionals handle our personal safety and protection than to buy, train, and carry a gun ourselves.

The police cannot be everywhere at all times, so some loss of life is to be expected, but “stuff happens.” The supreme court has found many times that you cannot sue a police department for failing to perform their duties in a timely manner. Whether the loss is a television or a family member, you cannot sue the police except in cases of extreme negligence or overt malfeasance.

Do your criticisms of the professional driver world apply to ours?

Keep in mind, the professional driver world would never let you drive your own car. Doing so would be extremely hazardous from a liability perspective. You’re choosing to take this responsibility in your own hands, you’re not professionally trained, you don’t have deep pockets behind you, and if you make a mistake, you are personally liable and uninsured.

Yet America allows, and many Americans willingly choose to take up this responsibility.

Americans say, “Yes, I accept the liability, responsibility, and the consequences of possible imprisonment or execution if I screw up.”

Why?

Because you can’t unmurder a family member.
Because you can’t unrape a daughter.

Those scars are permanent. They never go away.

When confronted with the threat of these Things That Cannot Be Undone, most of the world shrugs and says, “C’est la vie.” (An appropriately foreign idiom.)

In the personal driver world, when someone dies in a car accident, people say, “Well accidents are unavoidable. Stuff happens. It’s the price we pay for living in a world where we don’t have to worry about driving.”

Here, when someone dies as the result of crime, people say, “Well, crime is unavoidable. Stuff happens. It’s the price we pay for not having to carry guns and worry about crime all the time.”

In America we say, “No.”

We don’t want to abdicate the responsibility for things as precious as life to others… and if we do, we do so with the understanding that the responsibility we’re giving away was originally ours.

This is why many Americans say, “I accept the responsibility to protect my loved ones even if it means my death.”

It’s an argument for self-determination.
An individualist argument.

Americans do not step back, look at the situation abstractly, and opine, “What could have been done?” Because the answer is obvious: “I could have done something.”

We drive our own cars, we carry our own guns. We are the arbiters.

If the police don’t make it in time, we look to ourselves, and say, “I should have done something. I’m the one that needs to change.”

That’s why America is different. That’s why the American wants to do his own thing, start his own business, chart his own destiny.

That’s why the American wants to be in control of his own life in every way he possibly can.

Free to make good decisions and reap the benefits of them.

Free to make bad decisions and suffer the consequences of them.

That is why Americans like guns, that is why Americans are exceptional.

That is why America is America.

And that’s why if you don’t like it, YUO KIN GIT OUT!

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Self-Driving American

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