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If you can’t beat ’em, join ’em
Can the authorities be serious? The Mail reported this week that there are plans to construct a race track so that boy racers can “race legally” rather than on public roads. “Our main concern is to upgrade health and safety” an official was quoted as saying.
Forgive me, but they can already race legally in organised motor sport events, of which we have dozens every year: rallies, autocrosses and drag racing.
Could it be that, quite simply, the police are unable to enforce the law and it is hoped that this measure will curb the nightly roar of engines? I doubt it will work. Part of the thrill for the racers is the prospect of outwitting the police – it’s the very illegality which adds that frisson of excitement to these nocturnal activities (not to mention the gambling that often accompanies the races).
I had thought that you were considered, at 18, to be old enough and responsible enough to be in charge of a potentially lethal machine and to take that responsibility seriously. The idea of providing a race-track for youngsters sends out entirely the wrong message, and the plans also demonstrate a worrying disregard for the law. It suggests that, if a problem persists, the answer is not to enforce the law, but to find a way round it.
With this mindset, perhaps the powers that be should consider licensing selected restaurants to legally sell ambelopoulia, create cafes and clubs where people can legally take drugs, and build stadia where football hooligans can legally beat the crap out of each other.