Of course you do. This isn’t Grand Theft Auto where you demonically accelerate to turn pedestrians into street pizzas.
This is Earth, and when people are in the road, we stop. It’s nice to let others live and have us not go to jail. Thank you conscience. Thank you laws.
Which brings me back to the “I brake for people” bumper stickers I see. Some standard had been proposed for whom, or for what, we should brake. And there are some things that we would at least swerve for. And there are some things we would apathetically flatten as if they damn well deserved it for being in the way.
So, I’ve pondered who I would brake for and who I would not, just so I can be prepared when I’m out on the road.
All people? Hmm…
Old people? Of course, brake.
Teenagers? Yes, brake. But throw in a fist shake and stern talking to.
Football fans leaving a game? Brake.
Carolina fans leaving a game? Uhh, uhh…OK, yes brake.
Bad hombres? Yes brake, they have no chance for redemption if you vehicular manslaughter them.
Homeless? Yes, brake. But many are quite adept at weaving through traffic so even if you don’t see them you might be all right.
Dog? Yes, brake.
Cat? … Ohhhhh, all right brake.
Deer? Brake hard.
Squirrel? Don’t brake. Swerve cautiously.
Turtle? Don’t brake or swerve, you have a meeting with bagels to get to!
Bird? They’ll get out of the way.
Duck? They might not get out of the way. Honk, swerve, and hope for the best.
Duck family? Of course for the love of nature brake unless there is a pitch black chasm where your soul should be!
I guess the bottom line is that you should brake for most living things. (Living things you can see, of course. If you drove everywhere at four miles an hour and braked every three seconds I suppose you could even avoid hitting bugs.)
So the next time you’re driving down the road and see some living, breathing things in it, stop and make the kind choice not to kill them.
Yes, I brake for people. Anyone you don’t brake for?