Some words about those hand-held devices

Posted 7/16/19

Shocked. Surprised. And eventually thankful. I do not know if you or your family have ever used the phone “app” WAZE, or a similar type directional device, but upon reaching a destination …

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Some words about those hand-held devices


Shocked. Surprised. And eventually thankful.

I do not know if you or your family have ever used the phone “app” WAZE, or a similar type directional device, but upon reaching a destination recently I was given an audible and also a visual reminder through this app to “please do not leave your infant, child or pet inside your automobile when you exit.”

I have also read where some who give advice as a career emphasize placing an object that you treasure and would not leave in your car — such as your phone — in the back seat next to your child.

This makes you physically reach across your child so you would be reminded that they were in the car with you.

I originally thought, “Who is the one person who values their phone more than their own child?” But after watching a few people in town at restaurants, it dawned on me there are way more than just that one.

I am not casting stones by any means as I have not been, nor do I now claim to be, the world’s best father. But I did listen to my children, care about them and work to provide a better life for them and now their families.

Last week I noticed someone who appeared to be in their mid-30s (should know better) at a restaurant with what also appeared to be his young child. The child was very well-mannered and was sitting quietly at the table and eating their meal.

The “Dad” would never had known otherwise if the child had gotten up and wandered off as he was enthralled with the game that he was playing on his phone. This was not a brief moment either, as throughout the 30 minutes spent in the restaurant not once did the “Dad” even look up to acknowledge the child’s existence, nor did they even speak to each other.

Society has enough problems that are seemingly increasing attacks on children and also families. The safe place that used to be known as home is nowhere to be found for some, and many people are quick to blame the youth as not being appreciative for their own place in society and for their “things’ that they are given.

I am sure that there is some validity to this, but there are also a lot of adults who have completely ignored their own children and found that they indeed have strangers at home who share the same roof, instead of a family.

Earlier this month a new state law went into effect across Tennessee that was put in place to restrict the use of holding your phone while operating a motor vehicle across our roadways.

We have all heard the excuse that I know what I am doing and I can safely dial a number while driving. But, please remember for each second that your eyes are diverted from the roadway when traveling 60 miles per hour, you will have also traveled 88 feet or 29.33 yards.

The devastation that can be caused by a multi-ton device because a driver’s attention is distracted by a phone can also pale in comparison to the devastation that can also be wreaked by preferring the same phone over one’s own children. May we all start today, if you have not already, to once again get our priorities realigned with what will pay us untold dividends instead of cost us untold amounts of grief and expense.

Please remain aware of your surroundings as we spoke about last week. If in a place where there are multiple cars, trucks and SUVs, remain vigilant when there to check for a child, small animal or pet that might have been left accidentally by a distracted driver.

In doing so. you are yet another reason that Bradley County is Tennessee at its best!


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