This week the Republican-led General Assembly put the kibosh on freedom-loving moped owners with new requirements for registration and liability insurance. Consistent with their intent to control whatever they can, including women's bodies, drugs, license plates, sea level rise, etc., GOP leaders now have bicycles, tricycles, and maybe even pedestrians in their sights.
Moped and bicycle drivers in North Carolina currently do not need a license, insurance or registration; and Rep. Phil Shepard, R-Onslow, said the bikes have become an unchecked liability. Hundreds of bicyclists are killed every year, he said, and the trend is growing.
“This legislation is just a starting point,” Shepard told The Daily News on Thursday afternoon shortly after the bill passed 83-29 on second reading. “We don’t know anything about them. There’s no restrictions on them now. There’s no documentation. You can just buy one and drive it.”
I applaud this legislative action and encourage the General Assembly to extend their reach to pedestrians as well. The hard truth is, we know almost nothing about the sinister citizens who currently walk our streets without licenses or insurance. When a walker runs into a car, how can we know he's insured against the damage he may cause? It's high time we cracked down on these freeloaders. Car drivers need our protection.
"Next session, we'll be taking on motorized skateboards, regular skateboards, and rollerblades," said Shepard. "We know the people who use them are reckless bums, and now we'll have a way to control and tax them. Plus we'll guarantee even more profits for the beleaguered insurance industry. With this mandate, they'll get thousands of new customers ."