Reasons Not to Drive a Car

Over the years I’ve seen many campaigns to persuade people from driving cars. Generally, the main arguments against automobiles are that they release harmful pollutants into the air and they consume non-renewable fuels.

These arguments will soon loose their validity as car manufacturers explore ways to design environmentally-friendly cars that do not emit pollutants and only use renewable fuels. It looks like the future of transportation will be filled with hybrids, electric vehicles, hydrogen vehicles, and other alternative vehicles.

Even though cars are becoming more environmentally-friendly, there are several other reasons that people should stop driving cars.

1. Cars are expensive: Down payments, monthly installments, gas, check-ups, insurance, maintenance, parking, taxes, registration, tickets, accidents, etc. Think of all of the money you would save if you didn’t have a car in your life. Imagine all of the possibilities with that leftover cash…

Additionally, local, state, and federal governments have spent a lot of money to build, service, and police roads.
2. Cars are socially isolating: As people move further away from the cities and as the roads get more congested, drivers are spending more time in their cars and less time in social environments.
3. Cars are not safe: I have not searched for statistics concerning cars and auto-related accidents, but I am confident that cars cause more accidents and deaths than public transportation. When you drive a car you have to worry about other drivers, pedestrians, bad weather, road conditions, animals, and other externalities.
4. Cars are inefficient: A typical car can only transport 4 – 5 people. A bus can transport about 50, and a train can service several hundred. Furthermore, cars require a lot of energy for minimal output.

Here are some of the reasons why people drive cars:
1. In many case it’s the only feasible mode of transportation available
2. It’s a status symbol
3. It’s our country’s tradition
4. It’s fashionable
5. We want personal independence and freedom

So what should we do? Cars are inefficient, expensive, and dangerous, but it’s America’s preferred mode of transportation. Do we plan for what we want to happen? Or, do should our plans reflect what Americans want?

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