As of today, new laws will come into force in South Australia, allowing the Police Commissioner to crush the cars of ‘hoon drivers’ that have been impounded. Why this even deserves a mention is that a great number of people apparently support such moves to punish ‘hoons’, a group which are characterised all too often as another one of those great, foreboding, malevolent forces which plagues the great state of South Australia.
The potential for harm is huge. The idea behind the scheme is that crushing the cars will provide a deterrent to all those rev-head’s out there driving their done-up cars at a speed for exceeding any limit. Of course, that’s not how it works out here in the real world. Hoon drivers can be broken up into either those with money who can afford the expensive cars as if they were toys, in which case the crushing of the car will have no real effect anyway, or those young men and adolescents who have no real direction or purpose in life and so spend what money they earn on enhancing their car — their pride and joy. A majority of these people are from the North.
To put it bluntly, many of those in this category aren’t that bright. They’ve never been academic or sporting heros. These are the, mostly, young men who have dropped out of high school or finished it with no real idea of where they want to go or what they want to do. Many work as mechanics, on factory lines, as removalists or occasionally in retail. Some are in gangs. With no purpose in life, these people have their cars and their girlfriends. All their money is then funnelled into improving the car. Making it go faster, look better, sound like it has more balls. The car becomes their pride and joy, the reason for their existence. When they drive, they drive it fast, granted and I make no apologies for this.
Enter laws that allow their cars to be crushed.
Imagine if you can, the line of logic these ‘hoon’ drivers are going to follow the moment they are discovered driving at 110kmph in an 80 zone. You know something about cars being crushed. You’ve heard about it. Your friends have talked about. One’s even had it happen to them. If you pull over, your car will be crushed. Your pride and joy, the very thing that drives you to get up in the morning to go to work, to see your girlfriend, to eat even. If you pull over, it will be taken away and crushed by guys in a blue uniform. What are you going to do?
The answer is simple; run.
You will run. You will see those red and blue lights and you will plant your foot on the accelerator and take off as fast as you can.
If you ask anyone commonly classed as a ‘hoon’ their opinion on the subject, and more precisely what they will do, they will give you the same response every time; “I will run.”
Then ask yourself, what happens when these people run? Their speed increases exponentially. They become not just a serious threat to themselves, but their passengers and anyone else on the road. Every second that passes their speed increases and they become even more of a threat than they were when they were speeding just to get from point A to B. They will exceed the the 110k’s you were doing moments before. They are panicked, arrogant and dead-set on getting away. The chances of an accident occurring increase to 99%. They are almost guaranteed to kill someone else on the road, themselves or at least crash, come out alive and be thrown in prison for the rest of their lives for a series of driving offences.
And if they actually pull over and their car is crushed? If they weren’t in a gang before, they’ll certainly join up soon enough.
So enjoy South Australia. In the process of trying to fervently to cure a problem like hoon driving with authoritarian laws, you are exponentially increasing the chances someone will wind up dead, not to mention ruining the lives of your least advantaged members. Oh wait, but they don’t particularly matter when all they do is build your houses, fix your pipes or work on a car assembly line. Besides, they’re evil, rotten, criminal hoons anyway. They deserve it.