Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Question of the week ~ guardrail

Community residents want to install a guardrail on a dangerous stretch of mountain road, after several people have driven off the cliff and died. But city officials say that expense would leave the city with no money for parks, business development, or even garbage removal. Should the city install the guardrail? Answer yes or no, and then tell us why, if you like.


Bonnie Jacobs said...

Yes. It seems to me they need to raise taxes to cover the needs of the citizens. If they want to think like utilitarians, they should realize they'll probably get sued by the families of the people who died, probably those already dead in accidents as well as those who die in the future. That's got to be more expensive than raising taxes NOW to do the right thing by erecting guardrails AND continuing garbage pickups. Parks may fall to the bottom of the list, along with business development. And why would new companies want to move to a town that doesn't "guard" (guardrail) against death to its citizens? Thus, my answer is YES, install guardrails along the dangerous stretch of road.

Bookfool said...

That's an interesting dilemma. I've heard city officials defend a lack of action on the fact that a dangerous stretch of road is still dangerous, even with rails in place. But, isn't that the point of taxes -- to pay for services that protect the citizens? Maybe a special tax to cover the railings would do the trick.

Gregory Murray said...

This is the way I see it. Government has been established by citizens to protect the life, liberty, and happiness of those selfsame citizens. Government never has and never will have a constitutional mandate to establish parks, remove garbage or develop business. It seems pretty clear-cut to me. Install the guardrails!