Friday, October 12, 2007

Too Clever by Half

For the past thirty-one years, I have been commuting from my home to my office on the campus of Stanford University. It must be noted that the undergraduate and graduate students at Stanford are among the smartest in the world, on par with Harvard, Yale, Princeton, Oxford, Cambridge, and the world’s other great universities.

Bicycles are an extremely inexpensive, popular, and convenient mode of transportation for those living on or near the campus. It is troubling to note that well over 90 percent of bicyclists do not wear helmets, use lights at night, or cease wearing headphones so they can hear the traffic around them. The Stanford Hospital treats about 200 patients every year due to bicycle accidents.

Experts in many fields of health and behavior advise individuals to eat properly, get plenty of rest, exercise, avoid tobacco and too much alcohol, and so on. If brilliant students can’t be bothered to put on a helmet to prevent serious head and brain injuries, why do you suppose the average person would listen to experts in other fields?

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