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Old 10-19-11, 09:16 PM   #1
1nterceptor
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Motorcyclist going over 80mph hit cyclist, plead guilty to manslaughter

Prosecutors said Ryan was driving his 2002 Harley-Davidson motorcycle northbound on the Wantagh State Parkway in June 2009 when he lost control and left the roadway. The crash killed 19-year-old Matthew Scarpati, who had stopped in the bike path to fix a flat tire on his bike on a path adjacent to the roadway.

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http://newyork.cbslocal.com/2011/10/...way-dwi-crash/
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Old 10-19-11, 09:52 PM   #2
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Scarpati’s mother, Lynn, described Ryan as a terrorist who used his motorcycle like a missile.
I have previously stated that real terrorists use car keys. I was too narrow in my thinking.
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Old 10-20-11, 12:44 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by 1nterceptor View Post
Prosecutors said Ryan was driving his 2002 Harley-Davidson motorcycle northbound on the Wantagh State Parkway in June 2009 when he lost control and left the roadway. The crash killed 19-year-old Matthew Scarpati, who had stopped in the bike path to fix a flat tire on his bike on a path adjacent to the roadway.

Full article:
http://newyork.cbslocal.com/2011/10/...way-dwi-crash/
RIP Matthew Scarpati
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Old 10-20-11, 08:44 AM   #4
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And what if he was not drunk? Probably a slap on the wrist.
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Old 10-20-11, 08:57 AM   #5
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And what if he was not drunk? Probably a slap on the wrist.
Yep. DUI/DWI is usually the only way you'll receive a heavy sentence for reckless driving in this country. If you were "just" deliberately not paying attention, or "just" driving aggressively and unsafely, then the police, courts, and legislators think it's no big deal even if you kill someone. Just an accident, you see, that could happen to any of us.
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Old 10-20-11, 10:47 AM   #6
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That reminds me of a couple of cyclists who were killed here a couple of years ago by a young driver who'd been up partying all night. He failed a field sobriety test, but his father was quick to tell the media that he didn't think his son was drunk. I remember thinking that it would be even worse for someone sober to be that negligent. But the courts in this country rarely seem to see it that way.
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Old 10-20-11, 01:57 PM   #7
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That reminds me of a couple of cyclists who were killed here a couple of years ago by a young driver who'd been up partying all night. He failed a field sobriety test, but his father was quick to tell the media that he didn't think his son was drunk. I remember thinking that it would be even worse for someone sober to be that negligent. But the courts in this country rarely seem to see it that way.
DUI has effectively been pretty well stigmatized in this country, due to the dedicated efforts of pressure groups who were pissed off about the problems it creates. (Of course, they probably had it easier because alcohol already had some level of negative social stigma in the United States). Now, pretty much everyone believes that it's incredibly negligent and reckless to drive drunk, and so the courts and police have responded by actually cracking down (at least in some places...there are still way too many egregious DUI cases that result in a slap on the wrist). Even though we are far from actually solving the problem of drunk driving, public opinion at least recognizes that it's something that we should TRY to solve. That's why the authorities care about it...because public opinion is against it.

Contrast this with things like cell phone use, texting while driving, and aggressive/road raging driving. These are also nearly as dangerous as driving drunk, and just as widespread, but for some reason there isn't public pressure to solve them and crack down on offenders like there is for drunk driving. These behaviors haven't crossed over in the public consciousness from "normal behavior" to "criminal behavior", for whatever reason. I don't really understand why that is, as it seems irrational and arbitrary to me as the statistics proving that these actions are dangerous are there. Maybe someone needs to form a pressure group to demonize people who use cell phones while driving, or something. However we do it, I don't think we'll see a change in perceptions about what is reckless and what isn't until there is social stigma attached.
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