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Seeing really is believing
Did you see the latest news? Probably not with all the chowing down on those Independence Day grilled Angus burgers, but it seems the blind soon will be able to drive cars.
The National Federation of the Blind and Virginia Tech have plans next year to demonstrate a prototype vehicle equipped with technology that helps a blind person drive a car independently.
The technology known as “nonvisual interfaces” uses sensors that allow a blind driver to maneuver a car based on information transmitted to him about his surroundings such as whether another car or object is close, in front of him, or in a neighboring lane.
Call me a cynic, but I don’t have a lot of faith in this. Now my lack of confidence when it comes to blind individuals getting behind the wheel actually is not about those without sight. It is instead more about all those others who lack “insight.”
The visually impaired are susceptible to the so-called sighted drivers, whose actions make themselves “blind” to their surroundings. The motorists who can see would rather read texts, stare at length at roadside distractions, and reach in the floorboard for a fallen Justin Bieber CD.
So, with that, do I think the blind operating vehicles will work out?
I’ll answer it this way:
There is a better chance former UGA athletic director Damon Evans, golf icon Tiger Woods, South Carolina governor Mark Sanford, and motorcycle customizer Jesse James will form a new group called “The Four Husbands” and together produce DVDs on how to be a great hubby.
We’ll call it self-imposed blindness mixed in with a bowl full of stupid.
I would call Evans and the others bonzos, but I believe that would be a slap in the primate jowls of “Bonzo,” the chimp who starred in a 1951 Ronald Reagan cinema classic. Yes kids, former President Reagan was in a movie with a chimp. After his years as an actor, Reagan eventually would associate with more chimps. Those chimps, however, were members of his Cabinet.
For all the lauding President Reagan received for being a splendid leader, did you know that his administration tripled the national deficit during his eight years in office? It is true so I can only fathom to think that the American public was blinded by Reagan’s charisma.
Before you get all up in a lather, simmer down Reaganomanics. Right now you probably want to shove me into a padded room and mandate I watch “Bedtime for Bonzo” over and over and over again.
Don’t worry. Here is something for you too.
In Saxby Chambliss’ recent weekly address, the U.S. Senator expressed his clear disgust that future generations will be forced to pay higher taxes to handle the “out-of-control” spending by the current presidential administration.
“Three weeks ago, America’s national debt topped $13 trillion. And let me say that one more time: $13 trillion is owed by the United States of America today. That number is so big it’s difficult to comprehend,” Chambliss said. “If you take that $13 trillion and divide it by the number of Americans, that’s $42,000 for every person in this country. The national debt has risen by $2.4 trillion in the 500 days since President Obama took office. That’s an average of nearly $5 billion per day.”
There’s solid evidence of the Obama administration turning a blind eye on reality. It doesn’t take a magic crystal ball for us to know that our grandchildren’s grandchildren are doomed.
Maybe a reference to “doomed” isn’t the appropriate transition into a discussion about Georgia’s impending gubernatorial race, but a couple of bad choices on the touch screens at the polling places and you just might get a long-lasting queasy feeling.
Roy Barnes, to some the already projected next Peach State King, has flaunted his campaign money around by running some statewide television commercials.
Judging by Barnes’ latest one, it looks as though the former governor believes he can blind the voters into putting him back in office.
Barnes says no more furlough days for teachers, who certainly are a group I admire. No furloughs sounds wonderful, but to do this the state would have to furlough other state workers additional days to save cash. Sorry to inform people, but more furloughs are coming.
Barnes also said he would give teachers pay raises. That also sounds wonderful, but to do this the state would have to cut other programs or mandate local school boards procure the funding. Georgia is required by law to balance its budget, so either your local taxes will go up or the BOE will have to make even more reductions to generate the payroll dough.
On the local front, we are not blind to our surroundings. We have 20-20 vision.
Unfortunately, although people’s eyes are only 4 inches from their lips, it is rare that the citizens in our community stand up for their beliefs. We cannot live under the pretense that if we open our mouths and speak our minds that we will be cast out to sea to a remote island as if we are lepers.
Our work to make this community better begins with you. Meet one-on-one with your elected officials. Exercise your public participation rights at meetings.
Don’t just close your eyes and hope for the best. Keep your eyes wide open and make the best a reality.
Enoch Autry is the publisher-editor of the Sylvania Telephone.