DWP: Driving While Poor
by Dameocrat, Wed Sep 05, 2007 at 12:32:24 PM EDT
I recently pulled out a parking lot, and forgot to turn on my headlights immediately, but I turned them on after a couple of seconds.
Yes, I was pulled over by the cops.
They asked me to produce proof of insurance, but my fricking glove box was jammed with the drivers manual. He didn't ticket me for not having my headlights on, but did ticket me for not having proof of insurance. He told me if I would provide proof to the clerk of court this would be dismissed. Failure to provide proof would result in a $385 FINE if I didn't pay this fine, I would lose my license to drive. He let me go.
The next day, I was able to pry my glove box open, and I provided my proof of insurance to the clerk of court. The fine was dismissed but they gave me a $50 court fee
I am a disabled bipolar agoraphobic. I am on a fixed income. I really believe all this excessive fining and feeing will cause many poor people to lose their licenses to drive, rendering them permanently economically marginal. I live in Iowa. You literally can't hold a job without a license. To call a license a privilege in a state like this is a joke. I am not saying it was right for me to not have my lights on when I pulled out of the parking but I am a human being, and none of us are prefect. I am not saying that I was right for not knowing my glove box was jammed up, but I am a human being and nobody is perfect. I didn't ask to have an illness, or to live on only $530 a month but that is the way things are for me, and for many others.
I called my State Senator Herman Quirmbach, a Democrat, who is a Harvard/Princeton educated economics professor at Iowa State, to ask him if he could do something to lower fines, and his only response was that I should have produced Insurance and should have had my lights on, if not being able to pay such fines causes me to lose my driving privileges that is tough. When I inquired about the court fees, that were charged despite the fact that charges were dismissed, he claimed I made them take me to court, so it is tough. I said, what about the presumption of innocence, should the tax payers as a whole be paying the costs of the court, he changed the subject to my admission of not having my lights on. Remember this is a Democrat. He literally sees no problem with losing your license for inability to pay fines and fees. He sees no problem with not being able to drive in state where a person has to be able to drive to get a job.
It just seems like if you are poor neither party gives a shit about you. I literally have no-one to vote for, when voting for state Senator. I think I will just pass on voting for that seat just because he is the Democrat. I live in an upper middle class college town. They are liberal, but wealthy, and probably have no empathy for the poor. I know it is not possible to get a primary challenge to him so I have no one to vote for. I am a non-citizen practically.
I also fear I will eventually lose license for being human and poor. I might as well commit myself to the loony bin then, otherwise I will starve. I suppose both parties feel that people like me are suppose to fall back on our families, but my relationship with them is emotionally and sometimes physically abusive. Yes they maybe the reason I am messed up.
God help me, but I am skeptical he exists. I am feeling very depressed now.