We Are No Longer A Democracy Reason #441

I apologize in advance, but Bubba is wearin’ his grumpy old curmudgeon hat this morning.

With a hat tip to Bluegrass Pundit, I found an article in the News & Observer this morning  about a citizen concerned about traffic conditions, prompting him to create a proposal to install two new traffic lights as part of a “planned widening” of a road.

Apparently, David N. Cox put a lot of time and effort into this proposal. So much so that when Kevin Lacy, chief traffic engineer for the North Carolina Department of Transportation, saw the proposal he forwarded it to the NC Board of Examiners. The possible violation? “Practicing engineering without a license.”

Cox says that they were trying to “express our view about this.” He assembled an eight-page proposal to convince the state to reconsider their decision not to install the two traffic signals Cox and his neighbors thought was needed.

However, Lacy has a different point of view about Cox’s proposal. “Lacy says he filed the complaint because the report “appears to be engineering-level work” by someone who is not licensed as a professional engineer.”  Lacy goes on to say in the article that “”when you start applying the principles for trip generation and route assignment, applying judgments from engineering documents and national standards, and making recommendations,” that’s technical work a licensed engineer would do.”

Apparently we’ve all forgotten how to play nice. Or use our brains in a manner that would make sense.

So, Mr. Lacy, let me apply a little extended thinking to this. If I can do so without you charging me with practicing something without a license.

Mr. Cox is a citizen unhappy with the state’s decision not to install traffic lights. As a citizen, he has every right to do so. Why did you have him investigated? Seriously, would you have been happier if he had used crayon and poor grammar in his proposal? I would think that, in your position, you would rather read something well-written and researched than something based solely on opinion.

According to the article, Lacy advised the group headed up by Cox to hire an engineer to make their case. Mr. Lacy, not everyone has the money to hire a professional to express their concerns. Are you saying that if they don’t hire an engineer, don’t bother?

I will start out saying I do not advocate any action that will lead to overthrowing the government. However, actions like these are the reason people start considering radical actions. As Americans, we will find a way to make our voices heard. If government starts punishing people for voicing their opinions, they will find a way to make themselves heard. Whether you like them or not, today’s Tea Party has gained momentum because as a group these citizens feel disenfranchised.

In other words, North Carolina, tread very carefully if your actions can be interpreted as squelching dissension.

Category: Personal

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