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GRENewb
06-10-2005, 03:15 AM
31. Some states are creating new laws that restrict the use of handheld cell phones by drivers of automobiles. Such legislation, however, is sheer folly. Although some people with cell phones undoubtedly cause problems on the road, including serious accidents, the majority do not. Besides, problems are also caused by drivers who are distracted by any number of other activities, from listening to the radio to disciplining children. Since there is no need to pass legislation restricting these and other such activities, it follows that there is no need to restrict people’s freedom to use a device that they find convenient – or helpful in emergencies.


The writer concludes that there is no need to restrict the use of handheld cell phones because the number of accidents caused by it is minor and there is no legislation restricting drivers from performing other activities while driving. However, the conclusion is flawed and illaudable.

First, the writer fails to understand that even though only a minority of people with cell phones will cause problems on the road, the resulted accidents can often affect the commute of the majority especially during rush hours. An already crowded highway can come to a complete crawl, and the public expenses incurred from the accidents will ultimately come out of taxpayers’ pockets.

In addition, the writer overlooks the fact that listening to radio and disciplining children do not necessarily require the use of a hand, whereas the use of a handheld cell phone does. The activities do not carry the same amount of risk in order to be qualified for an apple-to-apple comparison. The argument would be strengthened considerably if the writer could prove that drivers actually have to lift their hands off the wheel when performing such activities.

Finally, the writer assumes that no legislative restriction on an activity automatically means there is no need for another. The fact that no law is in place for an activity does not mean that such activity does not pose a risk to driving. The writer can strengthen his argument better by providing evidence that shows that listening to radio or disciplining children has never caused a problem to any driver before.



Any comment welcomed :)

sakshi_2212
07-13-2005, 04:53 PM
Hey...I am not very good at assessing essays cause i am not great at writing then anyways...

Its really good...nice flow and very systematic...But another point that came to my mind was use of handsfree while driving...so thats a distraction.

It was great...:tup:

kamakshi
05-05-2010, 02:28 PM
The argument maintains that hand-held cell phone devices are not the only cause of serious accidents. There are other activities like listening to radio and disciplining children that distract the attention of drivers. Based on these facts the editor of the news magazine concludes that although some states are creating laws to restrict handheld devices while driving there is no need to restrict the freedom of individuals from using such convenient devices. At a first glance this argument looks very convincing but after careful examination it suffers from several critical fallacies thereby making the argument very unconvincing.

First, the author mentions that some states are creating laws to restrict the use of handheld cell phone by automobile drivers. However, the author does not substantiate this claim with enough data. What does the law state? Which states are creating the laws? Does the law prohibit the drivers from using cell phones while driving? Does the law prohibit the drivers from carrying the cell phones with them in the first place? If the concern is because drivers holding cell phone on one hand and driving with the other hand which causes lot of distraction then the law perhaps can state that drivers can use hands free devices. These days’ cars are manufactured with Bluetooth techchnology. This helps them to talk comfortably while driving.

Second, the author claims that listening to radio is a distraction. While it may be distraction for few. Most of the time it is a companion for drivers driving long distances. It is very likely for drivers to fall asleep while turning on the cruise control on a highway. These radios keep them attentive. Furthermore, the author mentions disciplining children is also a distraction. Does that mean there should be a law stating that children should not be traveling? Sometimes, when babies do not like to be seated in a car seat they begin to cry. This causes lot of panic to drivers and they begin to calm the baby by talking to them or singing lullaby while driving. If the child calms down and go to bed it is not a problem but if the child continues to cry the drivers can immediately pull over to a parking lot or nearest exit and work out the problem. It is a judgment call which drivers need to take based on the scenario. Therefore this claim made by the author is very unconvincing and make the argument very weak.

Third, the author does not mention the nature of the accidents. Are the accidents caused by drivers using cell phones while driving? Is it caused by exceeding speed limits and not following the rules of the road? Is it caused by inclement weather conditions? Is it caused by bad road conditions? Again there is no substantial data explains the causes.

In conclusion, the lack of evidence in the form of research and statistical data explaining the causes and seriousness of the accidents make the argument very weak in convincing the audience. Further study need to be done and appropriate legislative laws need to be passed.