Excitement and a bit of trepidation came over me as I walked the steps of the international airport. A new start in a new city. What could possibly go wrong? Quickly, I was assaulted with all that New York had to offer. I heard gunshots coming from nearby, watched ruffians and gangs face off in the streets, and saw a blatant disregard for traffic regulations. Perplexed, I tried to dig deeper into the issue, and what I observed would shock you. I stood on the corner of Sinner Street and Vespucci Boulevard, right outside MRPD, and witnessed countless fancy sports cars or motorbikes flout the rules of the road. Sometimes in the clear view of a police officer!
Clearly, there is a need for someone to get to the bottom of this travesty. In my quest to find more information, I found myself sharing a couch with a Mr. Frank Gambino who was just recently hired down at the Department of Motor Vehicles. Mr. Gambino was quick to confirm my suspicions that there were a surprising amount of traffic violations that occur regularly and shootings are so common that he seemed unfazed when happening right outside the very same building we were conducting our interview.
We also discussed the role of the main governing body for motorized vehicles, and I found that their main priority was to facilitate the sale and transfer of vehicles between the citizens of New York. I’ve also learned that the DMV does not manage the licensure or education of basic traffic safety regulations, though there has been some undercurrents within the administration to make certain services available.
After my discussion with the DMV, I thought that it would be prudent to discuss the issues that I’ve witnessed with those charged with protecting the citizens of New York. I decided to get in contact with the boys in blue down at the Mission Row Police Department. At the police station, I met with Officer Pierce of the NYPD, who was gracious enough to sit down with me and discuss the plight that I’ve uncovered.
Very early, it was apparent that officer Pierce was very familiar with the happenings around the city and how the underground reacts when their toes are stepped on. He also seemed very resigned to the fact that civilians will ignore basic traffic safety. Officer Pierce was also contrary to what Mr. Gambino surmised. Officer Pierce believes that the civilians are aware of the traffic laws, but choose to ignore them for some reason.
Officer Pierce was unable to comment on my observations in regards to officers letting violations go, citing that he was unaware of the circumstances involved in the particular situation. I ended our conversation by asking if he had an estimate on what the crime rate was within the city, to which he did not have an exact number, but surmised that the number would be high.
Enlightened, I feel like the most likely reason as to why the civilians succumb to the temptation to run a red light or speed excessively is more because there are very few individuals within the city who know how to drive. I feel that if the city could implement a driver’s education course within the city, we will see the number of moving violations decrease over time. I think we should be more concerned with the seemingly large amount of crime that we see in the city, and I feel as though we as Civilians owe it to New York to work with the police to curb the rampant crime that has gone unchecked for too long!