If you were to construct a Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs for Oklahomans, the bottom of the pyramid would be cars. Ascending from there comes oil, severe weather panicking and “personal responsibility.” At the very top is gravy.
I bring this up because Oklahoma is about to pit to of those needs – driving around in unnecessarily massive automobiles, and the desire for freedom and personal responsibility – against each other.
From The Tulsa World:
OKLAHOMA CITY — Oklahoma is months away from deploying automated license plate readers across the state in an effort to crack down on uninsured drivers…
When a vehicle with Oklahoma plates passes one of the cameras, it’s checked against the state database of registered vehicles. Because proof of insurance must be shown when registering or renewing a tag, UVED will be able to identify which cars are being driven without it.
Eventually, the registered owner of the vehicle will get a letter in the mail offering to enroll them in a diversion program that keeps them out of the court system. It costs $174 to enroll in the program, which defers any legal action for two years. A citation for driving without insurance can cost $250 plus court costs.
I’m not an Alex Jones deep state kinda guy, but it kind of creeps me out having spy cameras hidden at every intersection. We’ve already lost a lot of privacy through smartphones and being on the Internet constantly, now the state is going to monitor us like we’re Geico cavemen. Then again, maybe these hidden cameras will help us catch the next hit and run motorist that kills someone on a bicycle?
Either way, I’ve come to grips with all my information being sold to a thousand different marketing firms, but this adds another Black Mirror twist that I can’t see all the Q-Anon folks in our state would support. And for a state government who has been pushing this idea of “personal responsibility” during a pandemic that’s surging higher than ever, why are they so concerned with spending what must be an absurd amount of money to bust people for not being insured?
When it comes down to it all, these spy cameras will serve as a poor tax. Who are the people who can’t afford car insurance? The same people who can’t afford a ticket for $250 plus court costs. As far as I can tell, these cameras aren’t looking for people speeding through red lights or driving recklessly, they just wanna see if you can’t afford car insurance so they can mail you a bill.