Thursday, January 24, 2008

Do it for the Children!!

Frequently when I'm riding to work in the mornings, I get passed by a big ol' Chevy Suburban with "Promise" license plates on it. They look something like this:

Idaho has about 36 different types of "specialty" plates - everything from Firefighters to Bluebird to Medal-of-Honor winner. All very worthy causes, I'm sure. (I doubt they have to stamp out too many Medal of Honor plates. Far as I know, it's just Bernie Fisher and Rambo. But I digress.) A PDF poster of all of them can be seen here.

I believe you pay $40 extra for the theme plate; and part of the proceeds are donated to the cause, whatever it happens to be.

So, what is "America's Promise" to the Youth?

A guess: "We promise to burn up all the fossil fuel, so you won't have to worry about it." (nudge-nudge, wink-wink)

But, I'm sure whoever put those Promise plates on that big ol' Suburban feels pretty good about doing something "for the Children."

Here are some alternate suggestions - things you might consider doing "for the Children."
- Leave a little oil in the ground for them to burn!
- Pollute their air just a little bit less.
- If you have children, teach them by example that they don't have to be totally dependent on motor-vehicle transportation to get to their destinations. Support mass transit. Carpool whenever possible. Plan and combine trips. Walk someplace... or ride a bike.
- Don't live so far out in the boondocks that you are miles from your destinations - work, school, shopping, entertainment - so the only option is getting in the car and driving.

One of the major "rites of passage" in the life of a youth is the day she/he completes Driver Education, and gets the driver's license.

I can still remember that day in my life, and it was almost 40 years ago! I took the family's '60 Rambler American - "The Meatloaf" - and was gone 'til after dark. And was promptly grounded from driving for a couple weeks, since my license was daylight-only. Live and learn.

Of course, like all other teenage kids, I thought any form of transportation other than car-driving was grossly inferior. And there was really no effort to convince me otherwise; from then on it was a battle to maximize my car-driving.

Knowing what I know now, if I had the power to command attention, I would declare to America's Youth that cars and trucks have a purpose, but in today's society they are the most inefficient possible choice, for most of what they are called on to do. Don't willingly submit to motor-vehicle (and oil-company) slavery!! That would be a wonderful gift to give America's Youth.


Anonymous said...

CHEERS for a wonderful post! You are SO right. We need some PSAs on TV about this very hypocrisy.

Anonymous said...

You inspired me to create a graphic about this very topic, which I have included in my post here: The graphic itself (which is open for use) is here:

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the Laugh Danielo. My wife had those plates and I thought it was a waste of money. It would be better to not have any plates at all except in the cupboard.

Bikeboy said...

You can get a cop plate that says "honoring our peace officers." I'm wondering if you're statistically more likely to get off with "only a warning," if your car has that plate. (THAT might be a worthwhile investment.)

You can get a "Corvette" plate. Do you have to demonstrate that you have a Corvette to hang it on, or could you order a set for your Cavalier, or Oldsmobile Alero?


db said...

Nice post, Bikeboy. I've wondered this myself a lot. Lots of lumbering gas-guzzlers with those plates on them. Also, would it kill them to use their turn signals -- FOR THE CHILDREN?

And nice work Danielo. That graphic should be printed as a flyer and posted at every Albertson's in the valley. ;)