Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Helmet polemics

When Ecovelo asked about mandatory helmet laws, the freedom fighters came out in force. "If you want to wear a helmet, do it. I do not, so I won’t. Do not push one on me and I won’t take yours away."

So I posed a question:

After a crash, none of you anti-helmet people will be asking for public assistance to pay for your facial reconstruction and brain surgery, right?

And the battle was joined:

# Adrienne says:

@ Gordon- As an American tax payer I am currently paying the Medicare costs of a country that has given its self diabetes, heart disease, STD’s, drug addiction…. the cost to me personally, and every other American, of other people’s preventable Type 2 diabetes is unfathomable. The number of brain injuries caused by bicycle accidents is minuscule compared to that. So to bring up the cost of bicycle injuries to the American public is silly.

I work in health care. Out of 100 patients I have seen in the past 3 months, none of them have had brain injury. I would say 80% of them had diabetes with serious complications like heart attack or limb amputation. Should we debate the cost of their medical care? After all, type 2 diabetes is 100% preventable.

take the argument to its logical conclusion.
Posted on April 21st, 2009 at 10:35 pm

# Gordon Inkeles says:

“take the argument to its logical conclusion.”

You haven’t seen any brain injuries over the past 3 months because cyclists are required to wear helmets.

This, Adrienne claimed was not the logical conclusion. Rather, we should let her ride without a helmet and also pay her medical bills when she crashes.

Here's another "health care worker--" a brain surgeon--on helmets.

I began the discussion on mandatory helmets as an agnostic. But I'm becoming a believer.

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