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Doc Lightning
GOLD Member since May 2001

Doc Lightning

HOP Mad Doctor
Location: San Francisco, CA, USA

Total posts: 13920
Posted:So in the last week, I have seen two children in horrible bike accidents. Neither was wearing a helmet.

One is 15. He's going to need some occupational therapy and he's going to be confused for a while (it's been about a week now). But he'll probably be more or less back to his baseline. He was an honors student.

The other honors student is a 10yo boy who I was kind of hoping would die. His brain looks like someone scrambled it with a fork. The swelling is so bad that they've had to remove a piece of his skull. He has a shear injury to his brainstem and can't even control his body's temperature correctly. He's going to be severely mentally and neurologically disabled if they ever get him out of this. The rest of his body is totally fine save a dislocated ankle. And yeah... horrible. From his school picture he was a really adorable kid. And he was an honors student. frown

Folks, please wear your helmets for biking and skating and climbing. I know they're uncomfortable, but severe brain damage is far worse. And parents, the rule with your kids should be: "If I ever catch you riding or skating without a helmet, you will do neither for one year."


-Mike )'(
Certified Mad Doctor and HoP High Priest of Nutella

"A buckuht 'n a hooze!" -Valura

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Doc Lightning
GOLD Member since May 2001

Doc Lightning

HOP Mad Doctor
Location: San Francisco, CA, USA

Total posts: 13920
Posted: Written by :Stone


Im sure it is a requirement to wear a helmet when going down a mine or when entering a construction site. Are those laws also seen as infringements of personal liberties?



No, because your employer has the right to force you to take certain safety precautions while on the job. Your rights and freedoms in the workplace are different than when you are on your own.

Suppose one day a well-done study came out showing that wearing a helmet while cycling reduced your chances of traumatic brain injury by 50% but increased spinal-cord-threatening cervical spine fractures by 400%. My immediate response would be to chuck my bike helmet in the trash.

But if bike helmets were the law, it would take months or years to get it changed. Or it might not be changed. After all, even after it was demonstrated that the "liquid bombers" were a farce, we're still putting 3oz containers of liquids in plastic baggies at TSA checkpoints. So what do facts and logic have to do with policy and politics?


-Mike )'(
Certified Mad Doctor and HoP High Priest of Nutella

"A buckuht 'n a hooze!" -Valura

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Lurch
BRONZE Member since Nov 2003

Lurch

old hand
Location: Oregon

Total posts: 929
Posted:Wearing a seatbelt is a choice. There is not, has not, and hopefully will never be any law requiring seatbelts on private property. Mandatory seatbelt laws *only* apply to highways (public roads). I can't get a ticket for not wearing a seatbelt if I'm driving around on a farm. It doesn't work like that. And don't forget that not wearing a seatbelt is not a *crime* it's a violation. But like I said, I don't necessarily agree with it being mandatory anyways.

If you think our hesitancy about establishing more laws that violate our right to choose has to do with insecurity and trust issues, than you're right. It does. Given a perfect world I suppose I wouldn't have to choose anything, it would all be chosen for me. My government would tend to my needs, and know what's best for me. But obviously that isn't the case. George Bush and the Patriot Act would be two glaringly obvious examples of why I want a say in everything that has to do with my life. It amazes me that you're so willing to slowly give up control of your life to a power you ultimately have no control over.

And the cost to society? When you can show me that *me* choosing to not wear a helmet puts *you* at risk, I may begin to contemplate it. So far you haven't even been able to convince me that me owning a gun, which is designed to kill people, puts innocent little you at more risk, so goodluck with a helmet wink

You've presented your argument why helmets should be used, and I fully agree with you. But some people won't, and that should be their right. Adults can act like children if they want.



Just for curiosities sake, would you want helmets to be required whenever anyone is on a bicycle? Only on roads? All public property, or is private property included? Would there be a maximum speed you could go before you needed a helmet?


#homeofpoi -- irc.newnet.net Come talk to us we're bored frown

Warning: Please Do Not Jump On The Seals

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willworkforfoodjnr
SILVER Member since Aug 2007

willworkforfoodjnr

Hunting robot foxes
Location: Huddersfield, West Yorkshire

Total posts: 1046
Posted: Written by :Lurch


I don't have to justify why I want the choice, you need to justify why I shouldn't be allowed it.



ditto

I think that hit the nail quite nicely.


Working hard to be a wandering hippie layabout. Ten years down, five to go!

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FireTom


Stargazer


Total posts: 6650
Posted: Written by :Stone


Fire Tom, thanks for the warning about Indian roads. The road accident rate in India is among the highest in the world, and most accidents are caused by human error.

 Written by Fire Tom

We follow road rules as to insure a were smooth steady flow of traffic (In Australia). Funny enough in a mostly unregulated system like that in India, it still works.



It really depends on what you mean by works Fire Tom.




Really Stone, if you are scared of ppl not obeying the traffic rules, don't come to India.

I would say that most accidents worldwide are caused by human error... However like to ask whether the statistics you refer to are in regards of 'overall' or 'per capita'. Please consider that we're talking about the second most populated country in the world.

"It works" means that you get from A to B.


the best smiles are the ones you lead to wink

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Stone
GOLD Member since Jun 2001

Stream Entrant
Location: Melbourne

Total posts: 2830
Posted: Written by Lightning

No, because your employer has the right to force you to take certain safety precautions while on the job. Your rights and freedoms in the workplace are different than when you are on your own.





So Lightning, there are some situations where its mandatory to take certain safety precautions. Has there been a flow on reducing infringements of personal liberties in other areas? It could be that the reasons for infringements of personal liberties are independent of each other, and there are many slippery poles, not one. For example, the diet and health problem issue could be seen as a separate and independent issue to seat belts which is separate to anti-terror laws.





 Written by Lurch

If you think our hesitancy about establishing more laws that violate our right to choose has to do with insecurity and trust issues, than you're right. It does. Given a perfect world I suppose I wouldn't have to choose anything, it would all be chosen for me. My government would tend to my needs, and know what's best for me. But obviously that isn't the case. George Bush and the Patriot Act would be two glaringly obvious examples of why I want a say in everything that has to do with my life. It amazes me that you're so willing to slowly give up control of your life to a power you ultimately have no control over.





I dont think a perfect world necessarily means a government taking care of all the peoples needs. That sounds like a Soviet Union centrally planned system, with echoes of McCarthyism. In a perfect world, there would be no need for politicians and mandatory laws.



George Bush was voted it twice. Now, thats not necessarily a criticism. There are flaws in the electoral system and good candidates don't come along all that often. So when someone good comes along you have the opportunity to make a difference, because those opportunities are rare.



 Written by Lurch

And the cost to society? When you can show me that *me* choosing to not wear a helmet puts *you* at risk, I may begin to contemplate it. So far you haven't even been able to convince me that me owning a gun, which is designed to kill people, puts innocent little you at more risk, so goodluck with a helmet.





The costs to society are the cost of ambulances, hospitals etc. as well as the emotional costs to family and friends. But that seems a separate discussion because you seem to see yourself separate from society.



 Written by Lurch

Just for curiosities sake, would you want helmets to be required whenever anyone is on a bicycle? Only on roads? All public property, or is private property included? Would there be a maximum speed you could go before you needed a helmet.





Its not me Lurch, this is what has happened in other countries. Laws generally include roads and public property including National parks. As to maximum speed limits, Im not sure. Though, did see a US television show where cops where booking mountain bike riders for speeding in a National Park.



Fire Tom, Im not scared to wear a helmet, or ride in India for that matter. The figures are number of accidents for 1000 vehicles in India.


If we as members of the human race practice meditation, we can transcend our fear, despair, and forgetfulness. Meditation is not an escape. It is the courage to look at reality with mindfulness and concentration. Thich Nhat Hanh

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FireTom


Stargazer


Total posts: 6650
Posted:Numbers of accidents does not = number of deadly accidents in relation to the overall population.

Actually India is the country with the highest murder rate... but not per capita.

"Emotional costs to family and friends..." we're you going with that one? umm

As much as I disagree with Lurch on other topics - where do you recognize him feeling separate from society? Maybe I've learned from the past (as in BTDT) - but I reckon you're jumping conclusions here.


the best smiles are the ones you lead to wink

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Stone
GOLD Member since Jun 2001

Stream Entrant
Location: Melbourne

Total posts: 2830
Posted:Quick answers Fire Tom. Number of accidents for 1000 vehicles, works for me. At this stage of growth I think there would be a linear relationship between number of vehicles and population. Liberalism comes up a lot. Emotional costs include things other than money. Have to go.

If we as members of the human race practice meditation, we can transcend our fear, despair, and forgetfulness. Meditation is not an escape. It is the courage to look at reality with mindfulness and concentration. Thich Nhat Hanh

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Doc Lightning
GOLD Member since May 2001

Doc Lightning

HOP Mad Doctor
Location: San Francisco, CA, USA

Total posts: 13920
Posted: Written by :Stone



So Lightning, there are some situations where its mandatory to take certain safety precautions. Has there been a flow on reducing infringements of personal liberties in other areas? It could be that the reasons for infringements of personal liberties are independent of each other, and there are many slippery poles, not one. For example, the diet and health problem issue could be seen as a separate and independent issue to seat belts which is separate to anti-terror laws.



No. You're missing the issue.

The issue is that when you are at work, your employer has a right to set conditions of employment, including mandating that you observe certain safety precautions. Those conditions may be regulated by the government, but the important thing is that they only apply while you are at work.*

When you are NOT at work, then you are your own master and boss. And nobody should have the right to mandate that you observe safety precautions as long as you endanger nobody but yourself.

*(This is, BTW, why I oppose employee drug testing. If I smoked a joint last week on my own time, that's not going to affect my performance on the job today, and so that should be none of my employer's business. If my employer believes that I am not sober on the job, then I do support sobriety testing [and more research into how to objectively measure sobriety].)


-Mike )'(
Certified Mad Doctor and HoP High Priest of Nutella

"A buckuht 'n a hooze!" -Valura

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FireTom


Stargazer


Total posts: 6650
Posted:I know what "emotional costs of friends and family" mean but where the heck are you going with it in the context of legislation? umm

the best smiles are the ones you lead to wink

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BansheeCat
BRONZE Member since Jul 2005

veteran
Location: lost

Total posts: 1247
Posted:Andrea: If you dislike to pick up skull fragments, then please don't do it. I like you the way you are - no need to vulgarize your artistic spirit by doing what is not your job. Speaking of that: everyone chooses their own profession. If I commit myself to scratch ppl off the pavement, then that is my decision -I wouldn't expect your compassion for that.




To, I am surprised that you would consider the administration on required first aid to an injured person so optional?! It is, in some ways, but in others it is essential consideration for our humanity, to care for others. Even the care and respect shown to a dead body is an important part of our humanity.

I am not sure if you missed the point, it was simply that we should consider the interconnectedness of our behaviours and how what we do or not do will impact others. You can consider, and disregard, but most of us consider the adjustments we make to support living within a community good things, not losses to our liberty or freedom. Hence, I would not walk by a head injured biker on the road, even if I thought they were an idiot. I would do what I can, and accept that the expereince was a hard one that could easily have been avoided with a little more consideration.

And as for sullying my artistic temperment, I can not figure what you could possibly mean? Yes, I am an artist, but I worked as a healer and trained in anotomy physiolgy and full first aid long before that, and am often called upon to practice my skills in that capacity.


"God *was* my co-pilot, but then we crashed, and I had to eat him..."

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ali47


newbie
Location: NSW, Australia

Total posts: 7
Posted:Hi. Not exactly sure how things are viewed in other countries, but in Australia it is fairly common to make laws to do with public safety and health based on the public cost of things like head injuries from bicycle accidents, wearing seatbelts etc. Our emergency treatment and hospital treatment is publicly funded though. My understanding is that most folk here kind of accept that it is in the best interest of individuals and society as a whole to wear helmets and seatbelts. In the case of bike helmets and seat belts I agree with our laws being justified, and have grown up with bike helmets and seatbelts being a normal thing. (it's still not for everyone though).

I think it is a lot harder to get children to do what is good for them when the adults around them (and in the broader context of society) are not leading by example.

However, I think it is pretty scary when we as a society just accept things without looking at whether they are an erosion of our civil liberties or whether they are a rational approach to a problem. (our terror laws are an example which I would say the erosion of civil liberties is definately not justified!).


Also, I do notice that there are still many people who do not know how to fit a child seat belt or restraint properly, and loads of kids wearing helmets incorrectly.

Interestingly, in New South Wales (not sure about the rest of the country) it is law that dogs are restrained in special seat belts when travelling in the car (I don't thin many people really take much notice of that law or even know about it though). This is so that they do not cause injury to human passengers by becoming missiles in the event of heavy breaking or accidents, along with the actual dogs safety.

...be well smile


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FireTom


Stargazer


Total posts: 6650
Posted:@Andrea: I got your point - I guess - you're a compassionate person, I know you do what is needed, anytime the call is up, even if it jeopardizes your own life (rescuing downing people is a high risk).

I know that (as Mike's by starting up this thread) most of the pro-helmets intentions are good. You mean it well.

So far I can't follow up with your argumentation as in "why should helmets be mandatory"...

Children well do know that there are things adults do and they can't. It starts with staying up late, proceeds with watching certain movies and doesn't quite stop with operating a motor vehicle.

If - as a parent - you're unable to transmit to your children that there is a difference in responsibility and capability then why you put this on other adults?

As previously stated, to me helmets don't make cycling safe. They make me turn my head less often, they submit a false feeling of safety and usually they don't meet safety regulation standards anyway.

What is the use of a device that on the other hand diminishes the wearers' attention and alertness? From my own personal experience those who wear helmets often drive the scariest on the road, those who 'fear for their lives' are more cautious.

Children don't value life as much (yet), they have less overview on traffic situations and have their entire life ahead - and that's why I'd support legislation making helmets mandatory for children.

To me a spinal injury is worse than a scrambled brain. (Note: I'm not saying that helmets promote spinal injuries.)

I get it, you say nobody should have to pick up skull fragments and spoon up brain matter from pavements. To me this is as much of an emotional argument as in return claiming that mandatory helmets for all cyclists mean the end of the free world.

Education is the keyword in this one. Common sense has proven to be the savior many times over.

People will die (tragically) and accidents will happen, helmets or not. Helmets don't take away your responsibility to behave reasonable on the road.

When looking at people (legally) killing themselves with alcohol, tobacco and other (legal) stuff - it's kind of difficult.

Where will we start and where will it end - and how will we enforce a legislation that aims to protect us from ourselves?

Right now a friend of mine is in hospital. After they removed two of his toes early last year, now they had to remove his lower left leg and he still won't quit smoking. As I see it he will continue until he's dead. What to do? Restrain him? Shoot him? Turn off medicare and support?

What about people in extreme sports?
What about people not checking their HIV stat?

List continues. Shall we exempt them from medicare? Force them to refuse indulging in these activities by other means?

As Mike said: If one chooses to smoke a spliff (in holiday) and comes back to work a week later... let's pain an extreme picture.... is involved in an accident, (public) property gets damaged and (worse) people get killed - shalt we lock him up for neglect?

Don't get me wrong, but if you choose to help people in need - why do you complain? You did a great deed and saved their lives... that's the ideal... maybe you just don't want to come too late and just scrape them off the pavement - that's a great attitude, but ultimately you will have to let people make their own choices in freedom... At some stage you have to even let your children go...

hug


the best smiles are the ones you lead to wink

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bluecat


bluecat

geek, level 1
Location: everywhere

Total posts: 5300
Posted:incidentally, you are statistically much more likely to be struck by a car/bus/truck/van etc. if you are wearing a helmet*. add this to the fact that every time any one of my friends has been hit (that i know about) they have been wearing a helmet, and the number of serious head traumas per cycling accident is very, very small, i for one will be leaving my helmet in the cupboard.

but i do think that learner cyclists and children should wear them.

aaah contradiction smile




*i'll find the survey sometime, but don't have time right now, and am going to france tomorrow....


Holistic Spinner (I hope)

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Rouge Dragon
BRONZE Member since Jul 2003

Rouge Dragon

Insert Champagne Here
Location: without class distinction

Total posts: 13215
Posted:http://www.theage.com.au/world/bear-mauls-girl-in-bike-race-20080630-2z40.html

 Written by :


the girl was fortunate to be wearing a bike helmet because the bear had bitten her head.




Bike helmets. They help to protect from bears.


i would have changed ***** to phallus, and claire to petey Petey

Rougie: but that's what I'm doing here
Arnwyn: what letting me adjust myself in your room?..don't you dare quote that on HoP...

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newgabe
SILVER Member since Mar 2005

newgabe

what goes around comes around. unless you're into stalls.
Location: Bali

Total posts: 4030
Posted:This discussion seems so bizarre to me. How can bike helmets... not MOTOR BIKE helmets, but ordinary push bike helmets, stop anyone turning their head? Or limit their vision/hearing etc? (please remember I rode cycles for years I am not just an 'ignorant' car driver with no appreciation of the realities of being perched in the weather on a tiny bit of delicately balanced fragile metal out there in the real world)



*Its estimated that up to 85 percent of bicycling head injuries could be prevented through proper use of a helmet, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention*



Civil liberties?

vs head injuries?



Chalk? or holey cheese?


.....Can't juggle balls but I sure as hell can juggle details....

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Doc Lightning
GOLD Member since May 2001

Doc Lightning

HOP Mad Doctor
Location: San Francisco, CA, USA

Total posts: 13920
Posted: Written by :newgabe


Civil liberties?
vs head injuries?



Civil liberties should win every time. You EDUCATE people to wear bike helmets. And seatbelts. You don't FORCE them to.


-Mike )'(
Certified Mad Doctor and HoP High Priest of Nutella

"A buckuht 'n a hooze!" -Valura

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Rouge Dragon
BRONZE Member since Jul 2003

Rouge Dragon

Insert Champagne Here
Location: without class distinction

Total posts: 13215
Posted:Gabe, I don't understand that either. Not that I've ever ridden a motorbike to compare.

i would have changed ***** to phallus, and claire to petey Petey

Rougie: but that's what I'm doing here
Arnwyn: what letting me adjust myself in your room?..don't you dare quote that on HoP...

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FireTom


Stargazer


Total posts: 6650
Posted:Gabe - compared with bike helmets, the bicycle helmets are more subtle. Still I prefer to ride without, even though I drive at high speeds - to me it feels more comfortable.

I don't (want to) discourage anyone from wearing a helmet - especially if they feel the need to. I just try to state my feelings and observations.


the best smiles are the ones you lead to wink

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Doc Lightning
GOLD Member since May 2001

Doc Lightning

HOP Mad Doctor
Location: San Francisco, CA, USA

Total posts: 13920
Posted: Written by :FireTom


Gabe - compared with bike helmets, the bicycle helmets are more subtle. Still I prefer to ride without, even though I drive at high speeds - to me it feels more comfortable.



Tom, I think that's a completely idiotic decision. I won't mince words.

But I respect your right to make that decision.

You're still an idiot. wink hug


-Mike )'(
Certified Mad Doctor and HoP High Priest of Nutella

"A buckuht 'n a hooze!" -Valura

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FireTom


Stargazer


Total posts: 6650
Posted:
Non-Https Image Link
You're entitled to this opinion... I might take refuge in the fact that I'm with all the other 200 million or so idiots that ride the streets of Europe without wearing a helmet - every single day. And I really don't like that name calling - b1tch



wink hug


the best smiles are the ones you lead to wink

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Rouge Dragon
BRONZE Member since Jul 2003

Rouge Dragon

Insert Champagne Here
Location: without class distinction

Total posts: 13215
Posted:But from my experience, Europe was pretty cyclist friendly. I never felt unsafe without a helmet in Europe.

i would have changed ***** to phallus, and claire to petey Petey

Rougie: but that's what I'm doing here
Arnwyn: what letting me adjust myself in your room?..don't you dare quote that on HoP...

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FireTom


Stargazer


Total posts: 6650
Posted:My point exactly...

http://de.youtube.com/watch?v=qk6YxhKH590

http://de.youtube.com/watch?v=5rwwxrWHBB8


the best smiles are the ones you lead to wink

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Rouge Dragon
BRONZE Member since Jul 2003

Rouge Dragon

Insert Champagne Here
Location: without class distinction

Total posts: 13215
Posted:I absolutely loved amsterdamn when I was there! I loved that I knew the cars would respect me and I felt so safe knowing they wouldn't just run me over because they thought the road belonged to only them!

i would have changed ***** to phallus, and claire to petey Petey

Rougie: but that's what I'm doing here
Arnwyn: what letting me adjust myself in your room?..don't you dare quote that on HoP...

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FireTom


Stargazer


Total posts: 6650
Posted:Is that reverse logic?



Do you support mandatory helmet laws because those censored freaks behind the wheel are too censored to watch out for cyclists? Do I get called an 'idiot' here because actually those idiots are sitting in their cars, or walk the streets and have zero awareness other than "green=go" & "red=stop"?



I now spent 9 months in a country where not even motorcyclists wear helmets usually - and those are even the majority of road users.



[/ rolleyes ]



wink



better now?



[edited for Rouge]

EDITED_BY: FireTom (1214928195)


the best smiles are the ones you lead to wink

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Rouge Dragon
BRONZE Member since Jul 2003

Rouge Dragon

Insert Champagne Here
Location: without class distinction

Total posts: 13215
Posted: Written by : tom

Do you support mandatory helmet laws because those freaks behind the wheel are too to watch out for cyclists?



Correct.

Although I don't understand the rest of your post.


i would have changed ***** to phallus, and claire to petey Petey

Rougie: but that's what I'm doing here
Arnwyn: what letting me adjust myself in your room?..don't you dare quote that on HoP...

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Mr Majestik
SILVER Member since Mar 2004

Mr Majestik

coming to a country near you
Location: home of the tiney toothy bear

Total posts: 4693
Posted:how incredibly topical.

i just watched a young guy pound his head on the wet ashfelt when he went head over heels into the road with no helmet.

concussed and in pain? yes

ergo: wear a helmet if zou value your consciousness.

the sucky part was i dont speak swiss german so i couldnt even reallz ask him anything.


"but have you considered there is more to life than your eyelids?"

jointly owned by Fire_Spinning_Angel and Blu_Valley

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FireTom


Stargazer


Total posts: 6650
Posted:Shalt sound something like: "Yo lckch me am tschpple - hasch noch amal glckch g'habt!"

(pronounciation key: 'ch' - like clearing your throat, 'e' - like the english 'e', '' - like in the funny ossie "no", sch - like in 'shame'...)

Ergo: If you decide to rush head over heels into the road - especially when it's wet - better wear a helmet. I definitely side that.

PS: "you need an ambulance?" is also getting across to a (swiss) german...

Enjoy Switzerland, Mr. M... hug PM on the way


the best smiles are the ones you lead to wink

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