If you are a commuter who commutes to Washington D.C. for work or for pleasure, or if you live in the city and commute around on a regular basis, you need to be aware of red light cameras now more than ever. New red light cameras are being installed on commuter routes all around the city in the busiest intersections. Lawmakers tell us that they made the decision to install such cameras because they deemed it to be a good idea after analyzing data concerning accidents and crashes. These lawmakers state that it will enable more individuals to be safe. Since these cameras have been installed only a few days ago, they are still in the thirty day trial period. During this thirty day period, drivers who commit offenses will only be given a warning. No fines will be issued yet. When fines are issued, however, they will be as much as $75 per offense (WTOP News, 2010). While this seems like a good idea and while it seems like a fabulous solution to deterring driving offenses and keeping the roads a safe place, I don’t feel that this is the case.
You’re probably wondering why a blind person like me would be complaining about traffic cameras being installed. You’re probably thinking that i should worry myself with other things, since i do not drive. But I am going to complain about such cameras because even though I do not drive, the installations of these cameras still affects me.
One way that these cameras will affect me is that they are an invasion of my privacy. These cameras not only take pictures of the car, they also take pictures of those inside of it. Let’s say, for instance, that I’m riding with a friend of mine, and my friend just goes a tad bit over the speed limit. While my friend is driving, I’m doing something a bit embarrassing, such as quickly changing clothes in the car or cleaning out my nose. The camera takes a picture of us, and there you have it. Big brother not only sees us messing up without meaning to, but big brother also sees me in a pretty compromising situation.
I feel that these cameras are just another reason for big brother to spy. I understand that they are installed in order to enforce safer driving practices, but at what price should safety be enforced? Will it get to the point that there is no privacy at all? I shudder to think about my most sacred secrets being violated all because big brother wants to keep us safe and keep everyone from breaking the law. I’ve always prized my freedom as an American citizen; however, I feel like it is being sucked away drop by drop, as big brother finds more creative ways to control our lives and get into our personal affairs. Who knows, the next thing that may happen is that cameras will be installed in the rest rooms of all government buildings and public schools in the name of keeping these places free of illegal drugs and illegal activities while at the same time, they are capturing pictures of individuals in their most private moments. Some may think I’m crazy for writing this, but I personally do not feel we are too far off from something like that because the government is already taking measures as crazy as this to keep people on the straight and narrow.
Another way that these cameras are going to affect me is that they will require more tax dollars to be spent. Even though I’m a blind person who does not drive, I’m a business woman who is going to have to foot the bill like everyone else and incur additional tax burdens, just so big brother can pry some more into sacred and secret affairs. And what is even worse, we were never asked if we wanted these cameras in the first place. No lawmaker cared about what we thought about this issue. They just went ahead and made the decision for us. I love how these guys can just make decisions for us like this without getting our thoughts and forcing us to carry the burden of funding such a stupid agenda. I mean, it is like someone telling us how we will spend our money and then forcing us to comply. The last time I checked, this is not how a democracy runs.
Finally, I feel that these red light cameras will cause more safety risks. More drivers will be slamming on the brakes because they are paranoid about hefty fines for the most smallest of infractions. We can definitely look forward to larger car pileups. I just hope and pray I’m not involved in one of them.
While these red light cameras theoretically seem like a good idea, they aren’t! It is just another reason for people to be lazy and rely on technology to do the job, and these cameras equip big brother with more tools to control us.
WTOP NEWS. (2010, October 13). D.C. commuter routes get new red-light cameras. Retrieved from