19 January 2003
“The tagline [of a recent Hummer ad] reads: ‘Threaten Men in a Whole New Way.’ It’s not just men who ought to feel threatened by the Hummer, says John Kaehny, executive director of Transportation Alternatives, an advocacy group for pedestrians and cyclists. ‘Driving a Hummer on city streets is like flying a giant flag that says, “I hate New York,” ‘ he said.” – also from the Times, from the Metro (not the Auto) section. What does the “ought to” insinuate? That the owners of these despicable monsters have some sort of right, nay, prerogative, to threaten the lives of others? As far as I’m concerned, threatening deadly force against someone was still against the law, and if it wasn’t, it sure ought to be. Curiously, though, the article mentions that the H2 has a GVW of 8,000 pounds (four tons – an elephant, basically) fully loaded, but 6,400 pounds unloaded. Does that mean that the vehicle can only carry 1,600 pounds? Most midsize sedans can carry 1,000+ pounds — which is not much actual cargo given the national epidemic of morbid obesity.