DAILY COMMENTARY
By Marc Campos




The J-Traps

The Chron reports that the City of Houston is fixing to come down on jaywalkers. Commentary has seen cops write tickets for speeding, running a stop sign and running a red light - never seen a ticket written for jaywalking.

According to the Chron, it's the police chief's idea. The chief thinks there is a problem with downtown pedestrians crossing streets carelessly or in a illegal manner so as to be endangered by traffic (verbage pulled from the dictionary - word first coined in 1919).

The police department says they're going to educate us first. Good, this needs 'splaining. When the red hand begins to flash, can you dash through the intersection like most of us do, or is this a violation? Is this just going to be a downtown Houston thing only, or can we get nailed crossing 19th Street in the Heights, or W. Gray in Midtown?

The police department says the new crackdown is not a revenue generator. If J-team officers come back to the station without writing up citations, will they be told - "good job, thanks for keeping our streets safe" or will they be viewed as slackers not doing their job.

Yesterday, after the Astros game in 90 degree plus weather at around 4 pm, Commentary observed about 15 folks at an intersection. The red hand was lit, not a moving car in sight, and the folks walked through - hey, who wants to stand around in hot and humid weather. Will the J-team herd all the violators off to the side and write them all up? The city's gonna make a killing after a ballgame.

Also according to the Chron, the police department says a lot of jaywalking violations occur during the lunchtime hour. There are many county courthouse employees in downtown Houston - this oughta improve city-county relations.

What about racial profiling?

June 6, 2005, 9:00AM


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