Mark Zaid was given a traffic ticket in Montgomery County, MD, recently for flashing his headlights back in thanks to a driver who warned him about a speed trap. He was fined fifty bucks. He took it to court and won when the officer failed to appear.
Let’s face it, if a person sees a speed trap and flashes their lights to warn you and you both slow down, the law is served and public safety wins. Sometimes motorists need a gentle reminder why speed limits are posted in certain hazardous areas, whether it’s a deceptively dangerous curve or a neighborhood or business has demanded enforcement. If, however, the local police are NOT motivated by public safety concerns but are, on the other hand, using law enforcement as a mere revenue enhancement tool, then we have a problem with the cops and local government because you cannot have a constabulary whose primary relationship with the public is predatory. Ask yourself, why would there be any reasonable ban on driving with your hazard lights flashing, flashing your high beams, or any other means of communicating with other driver’s on the road except to give the police a reason to pick your pocket, search your car, or perhaps even harass you for being a political gadfly? Also, the flashing of lights has a multiple of necessary reasons for being used, i.e., warning a driver to turn on their headlights, telling a slow driver to get over that you want to pass, or simply to get someone’s attention, one can only conclude a sinister reason for such a measure. SO Cheers for Mr. Zaid, for fighting back for all of us. The next step should be to come up with a warming system to the public when idiotic and repressive measures such as these are being proposed in the first place and a civic organization to respond to local governments w fire and brimstone when they are. To such an organization I would contribute generously.
And baby! I want to be there when Mr. Zaid gets one of those letters from the fookin’ freakin’ Montgomery County Safe Speed Photo Radar Program!