Grind for April 4th, 2019
“Though she be but little, she is fierce.”
– William Shakespeare.”
Doctors warn: Electric scooters are hurting the public
The proliferation of electric scooters in crowded cities has exploded following the advent of the dockless electric scooter in 2017.
“They sort of just popped up out of nowhere,” says Washington, DC resident Matthew Lachance, who regularly rents scooters to travel throughout the city.
There’s no doubt about the benefits of electric scooters: they’re fun, convenient, and environmentally-friendly. You can rent them on the cheap in dozens of cities.
The downside: electric scooters have caused a sharp increase in minor injuries like fractures and lacerations.
“Almost during every shift, you’ll see somebody come in with an extremity injury or a head injury,” says Dr. Kate Douglass, who works in DC.
A big part of the problem is how riders use the scooters. Some people ride on sidewalks and others use the streets; some use bike lanes and almost none wear helmets.
City officials have expressed concerns about traffic congestion, accidents, and scooters left in the middle of sidewalks.
Lawmakers have responded to these concerns by imposing hard-to-enforce restrictions and rental companies have responded by demanding that cities redesign their streets to accommodate scooters.
With no solution imminent, the responsibility falls to individual scooter riders to follow city rules and practice safe habits.
Australian lawmakers want to keep terrorists off Facebook
Australian lawmakers this week introduced a bill that would punish social media companies like Facebook for allowing terrorists to exploit their platforms.
The proposal is a direct response to the Christchurch shooting in New Zealand last month, wherein the attacker used Facebook to livestream his actions for a full 17 minutes.
The incident marked another big failure for Facebook, which deleted the shooter’s account after it was notified of the livestream by a third party.
The new law is designed to “put responsibility back on the social media giants to prevent their platforms being co-opted by terrorists, criminals, and violent extremists,” explains Australia’s Attorney General Christian Porter.
“We will not allow social media platforms to be weaponized by terrorists and violent extremists who seek to harm and kill,” adds Australian politician Mitch Fifield. “And nor would we allow a situation that a young Australian child could log onto social media and watch a mass murder take place.”
With 50 dead and 50 injured, the Christchurch shooting was easily the deadliest mass shooting to take place in New Zealand in modern history.
Under the proposal, a mistake like Facebook made would be punishable with jail time (up to three years) or fines (up to 10% annual revenue).
Violators would face additional fines for failing to notify the Australian government about inappropriate livestreams filmed in Australia, even if those videos are deleted.
GOOD TO THE LAST DROP:
Did you know… Noodles, the guitarist for The Offspring, was the janitor for the school the band went to. He was allowed into the band because he was old enough to buy the band alcohol.