In America’s not so distant past, minor criminals were usually punished by being locked into a stock or pillory at the public square, where upstanding citizens could mock them for crimes ranging from disorderly drunkenness to stealing a neighbor’s pig.
New York City Major Michael R. Bloomberg recently suggested bringing back a form of these colonial punishments to deal with speeding drivers in the city. According the New York Times, Bloomberg is frustrated with the state legislation, which recently failed to pass a bill to install cameras at certain intersections and allow NY to fine speeding drivers. While the legislation, which is located at the state’s capital of Albany, is fine with the city installing such cameras (at its own expense, of course), it has yet to approve the fines.
So the mayor suggested another punishment in which such drivers would be “shamed” for their (lack of) driving habits. States Bloomberg, “We’ll put up their names and pictures someplace. Maybe we can shame them, and we should look at that, because if Albany is not going to let us do this stuff, we’ve got to save lives.”
Automotive.com’s take: What do you think of Bloomberg’s half-jest? With today’s connected world and online databases like those used to register sexual predators, it would not be difficult to create such virtual “pillories”. But would it work? Would speed offenders mend their ways? Or continue to keep the pedal to the metal? As always, let us know what you think in the comments below.