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The Driving Dilemma: Does a License Mean What It Used To?

By Rachel Grushan in Opinion & Politics

Twelve months have passed since I got my permit. I have driven only once since then, and only for a whopping 20 minutes. People are surprised when I tell them this. They ask me, “How’s driving going?” assuming that it’s something I’ve made a priority. My answer is always the same; that I haven’t driven much, that it doesn’t interest me, that I don’t see the appeal and I’ll probably get my license pretty late. Talking to our parents’ generation, it becomes apparent that driving meant freedom for them. It was how they got in touch with friends, how they got where they needed to go. Nowadays, if I need to get somewhere, I can take the bus, ride my bike, even walk. Boulder is big, but it’s not so big that I can’t put together a relatively fast method of transportation. And when it comes to huge cities like New York, no one needs to know how to drive either. There, you walk or take a taxi, no problem. With cell phones and social networking, our generation stays in touch with each other through touch screens and Twitter feeds. Not to downplay human interaction here, but having a car isn’t the difference between seeing someone or being out of their life completely. Sure, I’d rather spend time with friends in person than talk on the internet, but when I do I don’t need a car to get there. I’ll probably be that kid who bums rides from friends for most of my junior year, but I’m cool with that. I don’t especially enjoy the idea of driving either; something about piloting a rocketing metal carrier at high speeds with people I love inside doesn’t appeal to me. People have badgered me about it, insisting that I’ll regret not getting my license at 16 when I’m a senior, and maybe I will. All I know is that I’ve gotten along fine without a car for enough time now that I’ll survive another couple of years with only a permit.

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