Be an empathetic driver; watch the road rage

Karena Ozier, Columnist

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The light changes from red to green. The third car in front of you sits there for too long, indicating that they are distracted. Someone in front of you honks their horn to make them aware that they need to go. 

They finally go, but by the time they get moving, the light turns yellow, and you have to sit through another light. 

In this situation, would you have been yelling in your car about how upset you are even though the first car can’t hear you? Or do you just wait your turn? Most people with road rage would have been the one honking their horns and yelling. But why?

I am a very patient driver when it comes to situations like this. I put myself in the other person’s shoes and realize that mistakes happen. 

Of course, it is OK to honk your horn to make them aware, but in instances when someone “cuts you off” and you had to time and could have just applied your breaks, is it really necessary to use your horn?

Sure, situations vary, but if you find yourself honking your horn at someone every time your drive, maybe you need to tone it down.

A certain someone in my family has awful road rage. This particular person has had a few accidents due to bad driving on someone else’s part and has bad road rage.

You do not want to be the car that cuts them off. This person even takes road rage further and rather than honking, they display a finger that one might hold up when they get mad. 

If someone isn’t being a good driver and that upsets you and you get some road rage and go as far as flipping them off, this can make you a bad driver, too. 

When you get upset at someone for slowing down for a turn just a little too soon and you flip them off, just remember that they made the turn safely. It is not a race. 

It is good to be cautious when driving because you never know what type of drivers you have next to you. If you are too distracted by thinking about every little mistake that other drivers make, you are putting yourself and everyone else riding with you at risk. 

You have brakes for a reason, and at some point or another, you could be the one making the stupid mistake. 

Karena Ozier is a freshman elementary education major. She can be reached at 581-2812 or at [email protected].