By Scott Freeman
With the national debate of gun control again rearing its head, let’s do a quick comparison. Since vehicles kill or injure roughly three times more people a year than guns, let’s suppose we applied the same standards to vehicle operation that we do to guns. We will use California for example. Let’s start with purchasing a vehicle. You need a full background check, must be a citizen or legal resident and have no prohibiting factors in your history. Now you’re going wait 10 days to pick up your vehicle. If you’re buying used, you and the individual selling the vehicle must both go to the dealer for the transfer. Don’t forget the dealer’s fees; after all he has to make money too . . .
This is easy so far, inconvenient but easy. Your 10 days is up, time to pick up your vehicle and drive off. WRONG! Now you must have your vehicle transported to your home in an enclosed and locked trailer and stored in a locked garage. Your 10 gallon fuel tank must be EMPTY during transport, and you better make sure all your garage entrances are childproofed. Keep in mind you have now legally purchased a vehicle and stored a vehicle, your rights are not infringed at all.
Any time you want to use that vehicle just make sure the fuel tank is empty and it is towed in an enclosed and locked trailer to an approved driving area. Once there you can pay the owner any fee’s he/she may charge, put on your safety gear and fill up to 10 gallons of fuel and drive. Most likely it will be a short oval or circle and will have a speed limit imposed for “insurance” purposes. Keep in mind you are now legally using your vehicle, no rights infringement! Time to go home, follow the same procedures in reverse, un-fuel, enclosed locked trailer, locked garage.
Time for work, you better not think about driving without a license. You may legally own the vehicle, but you don’t have a license to use it wherever you want all willy-nilly! Guess it’s time to get a license to operate that two ton death machine on the road. So here is what you need to do:
First go down to or call your local Issuing Authority (IA) and request an application and an interview. Go ahead and fill out that application and be sure to explain exactly why you think you need to drive a vehicle. What conditions so onerous exist that you can’t possibly be like everyone else and need the “privilege” of driving? Filled out? Good. Your interview isn’t for nine more months.
Interview day. The very professional officer reviews your application, asks again why you need this “privilege” and goes over the rest of your history with a fine-toothed comb and ask for a letter from your employer stating it’s OK for you to have a vehicle on their property and for three letters of character reference. After reviewing your application the officer takes a photograph and sends you to be fingerprinted. Upon completion you are now instructed to make an appointment with an approved psychiatrist to make sure you are mentally fit to operate a vehicle and wait 90-120 days to hear back from the IA. Let’s not forget the $100 application fee, the $97 fingerprint fee and the hourly rate for the psychiatrist.
One hundred days have now passed and you get the call that you are tentatively approved. GREAT! Wait, now you have to schedule training with an IA approved instructor. Twenty-four hours of training (3 x 8 hour days) are required. You find an instructor and schedule your training for two months from now, every Saturday for three weekends. This guy isn’t bad, only $300 for the course — a bargain! Don’t forget to legally transport your car on “driving qualification” day to the appropriate facility. Bring at least 50 gallons of gas because it’s a very stringent course.
You finally complete the necessary training and take all your certificates to the IA and are issued a license that’s good for two years. Keep in mind there are a few restrictions. You obviously can’t drive on school property (you are exempt from the 1000 ft. rule though). You can’t drive anywhere that primarily serves alcohol, regardless of what they call themselves (bar, comedy club, etc.) and it’s your job to know the difference. You can’t drive anywhere that’s posted for no vehicles. Your vehicle must be on the state-approved list, can hold no more than 10 gallons of gas, and can be inspected at will by any peace officer. Any infraction (yes, even 1 mph over) can be cause for your license to be revoked and gods forbid you are ever in an accident. Even if it wasn’t your fault expect at least $10,000 in attorney fees.
One last thing — keep in mind whenever the vehicle isn’t under your direct control (i.e. you are not in it or within arm’s reach) it must be un-fueled, and in a locked storage area. Happy motoring!