Why Do Some Intersections Not Allow Right Turns on Red?

Dear Crabby,

Why do some intersections not allow right turns on red?  And why is it that those that do not allow it use the smallest sign to announce that your rights (pun intended) are being taken away?  Is this just another case of the government legislating what would normally be wise and prudent behavior by mature citizens?

Sincerely, Stuck on Red

Dear Stuck on Red,

You really shouldn’t get me started on traffic issues unless you are willing to sit and listen for a while!  As I’ve mentioned before, my trusty Olds and I have been through many decades of traffic idiocies together and we’ve managed to survive.  I, for one, do not understand all these traffic signs.  How am I supposed to look for ducks and deer, and watch for slow children playing, while still watching the road?  It seems to me that the most important sign would be “Look where you’re going, Dingbat!”  I read the other day that some poor guy got into an accident because he was trying to put his seat belt on!  For crying out loud!  No one even talked about seat belts for the first 25 years of my driving life.  In fact, I don’t think my first three vehicles even had them!  Nowadays, I have to use some five point harnass restraint system that’s approved by NASA just to take my grandkids to the corner and back!  I understand the safety issues, and I’m thankful we are keeping people safer, but I do think that if people could just think a little, we would all be a whole lot safer!  The worst part about them contraptions is that every time my daughter puts one in my car, all sorts of french fries, potato chips, and Cheerios come with them!  My car ends up looking like a college dorm room just from transferring the child’s seat into it!  But while them car seats can be a pain, I’ve learned that if you use them properly they not only keep the little fellers safe, they keep their messes contained.  But enough about that.  As for this turning right on red problem you have, I too have been sitting at an intersection in the middle of nowhere with a stupid sign that says “No Turn on Red” and I can’t see a single living being in any direction for miles.  After a few encounters like that, I finally got smart to what the government was trying to do.  Yep, they were conducting studies, I tell you.  Studies on human behavior.  You wouldn’t believe the ways I’ve seen some people behave when stopped at a red light – downright embarrassing.  I used to play games just to throw their study off a bit and to see if they were still watching.  A few times, I just ignored the sign and turned on the red light anyway.  The last time I did that was 12 years ago, and wouldn’t you know it?  Some copper was sitting kitty-corner and just had to come blaring out with his lights flashing like I was John Dillinger on an escape run or something.  He gave me a ticket for turning when I shouldn’t have and called it “reckless driving” at that.  So, being who I am, I went off on him and told him he must be part of the government experiment and that by harassing me he wasn’t doing his real job of stopping criminals.  Yes, I really gave it to him.  The cop took it pretty good.  Of course, I said most of that while he was back in his car writing up my citation.  Anyway, I don’t know who makes all these rules, but I do know that we gotta obey them.  Even after all my ranting and whining, I still had to pay a $125 fine.  So the rules is the rules and we’ve gotta follow them.  Good luck and happy driving, my friend!

Sincerely, Dear Crabby

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