New York State has a new law going into effective on February 22. This law has to do with young drivers; beginning on that date a “junior license” (for those between the ages of 16-18) will require that only one non-family member under the age of 21 will be allowed to ride in the vehicle with the driver if not accompanied by a parent or guardian. I believe that law also calls for the new driver to have a permit for six months before getting a license. So if you want to take your friends to the movies to celebrate that you got your license that day, you can’t. It will be illegal.

This issue doesn’t affect me in any way. But this new law still makes me angry. I think it’s wasted legislation, which is the result of wasted tax money and time that was used in dreaming up this new law.

Here’s the thing. First of all, I don’t know how any cop is going to be able to determine the age of all passengers, let alone the fact of whether they are related or not, when he or she spots a car passing him at 55 MPH. And how are you going to prove if they are related? There’s halves, steps, adopted and many other ways to be related. Are they going to give a blood test right there on the shoulder of the ride to determine if everyone has matching DNA? What if a young couple is double dating with another and going to the movies on a Saturday afternoon? None of them are related. If this is just a law that is going to be applied as an additional offense to something else, then don’t waste my time and just admit that you don’t give a flip about the safety of the passengers, you just want their money. When do we reach the point that because of the saturation of legislation that the people just say fuck it and no longer care if something is “against the law” or not?

Then we have the “must wait six months before getting a license” aspect of it. This is clearly legislation based on downstate ideals again. There are many young drivers upstate that have a pretty good idea of how to use a motor vehicle and are chomping at the bit to turn age 16 so they can drive legally. I was driving my father’s truck, my mother’s car, a tractor, a forklift and a dump truck (but not all at the same time!) all over family owned property (and other places) starting around age 13. Yes, I waited eight months to get my license at the insistence of my mother who wisely decreed that I would have to drive through the winter on my permit before getting my license. But that was a determination that my parents made, not the law. And that was the right way to approach the subject. My parents did the parenting! Not the State of New York.

Not to sound too overly morbid or insensitive, but all of these laws designed to coddle and control the people are preventing the natural order of thinning of the herd. It’s a fake safety blanket to make people feel better and of course it also generates voter support and revenue.

Don’t waste my time, don’t waste my money and sure as shit don’t try to control me.