Texting-While-Walking: A growing epidemic

Texting While Walking

Do you often feel the sudden urge to text someone?  Do you use texting as your means of communication as opposed to actually calling someone?  Does the thought of leaving your phone at home and not being able to text someone frighten you?

If you’ve answered yes to any of these questions, then you might be addicted to texting.

According to lawmakers, texting is becoming a serious problem not only behind the wheel, but while walking.  Many states have already passed laws banning texting while driving, but recently New Jersey passed a law making it illegal to text while walking.  An $85 fine will be issued to anyone who is caught walking while texting.  Apparently, texting seems to have similar effects to that of alcohol consumption.
According to New Jersey Police, there were 74 crashes last year involving pedestrians who were distracted by their own texting.  In a study by Stony Brook University, people have a difficult time walking in a straight line while texting.  This can be confirmed by examining the 117 violations and 3 deaths due to texting while walking.  People could also end up in jail…for texting.  If the fines are not paid, they don’t go to collection agencies; they become warrants for arrest.  Imagine going to jail for texting on your cell phone.

If people can’t pry themselves away from their phones for a few minutes while they walk down a busy street, then maybe they really do have a problem.  Nothing should be more important than your own safety.  A person being distracted by their own texting can also cost the lives of other drivers and passengers.  Not-to-mention, people feel the need to update their social media accounts, like Facebook.  Is this really necessary?

New York is also looking to bring upon this same ban, going even further to include listening to iPods while walking or running.  But is this ban on texting while walking going too far?  What does it say about people?  Are we not even trust-worthy enough to walk down a street properly?  And what does it say about the law?  Are all these restrictions on human life too much?

Written by Pamela Chiacchiaro
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