It is generally accepted that “texting while driving” is dangerous and is an inherently stupid activity. The reasons are obvious and no explanation is needed from me.
I’ve loathed the sight of drivers conversing on their cell phones, let alone operating texting devices while driving a 4,000-pound missile in heavy traffic.
There. We’ve re-established that, yes?
How about texting while walking?
You’ve seen it, too, I’m sure. People walking through shopping malls while distracted. Their eyes are fixed on that device in their hand. They are sending messages via those devices. They run into other mall shoppers. They slam into doors. They knock displays over at kiosks.
Oh, they just giggle and pick up after themselves. It’s all good.
Actually, it isn’t.
Some communities now are levying fines for those who are caught “texting while walking” across the street. The fines aren’t steep, but they are punishing those who commit these idiotic acts.
I know that “texting while walking” isn’t as egregious as when the activity involves driving a motor vehicle. The only person endangered is the person who refuses to look where he or she is going.
I am not going to hold my breath waiting for Texas communities to follow the lead of other American cities and towns. It took several sessions of the Texas Legislature to enact a statewide ban on texting while driving; the 2017 Legislature finally acted and Gov. Greg Abbott signed it into law. Good for lawmakers and good for the governor.
However, if tragedy should strike and someone is seriously hurt — or worse — because he or she is texting while walking through traffic … then we’re talking about a potential game-changer.