We’ve all heard of the nanny state, passing laws for our protection whether we like it or not. Well, brace yourselves for its party animal cousin, the “bro state.”
You might not have heard the term (as far as I know, I just now made it up), so allow me to explain: Like so many quintessentially “bro” things (eating mountains of chicken wings, drinking contests, staying out all night partying during the workweek, racing your midsize sedan down suburban streets), the bro state appeals to the more primal instincts in every male. And also like those things, no matter how bad the idea is when you actually think about it, the bro state is going to do it anyway.
The bro state has made its mark in Indiana, in the form of the state’s new left-lane law. Basically, the law stipulates that drivers in the left lane of interstate highways must change lanes to allow vehicles going faster than them pass, even if that vehicle is speeding. Failure to do so could warrant a $500 fine.
So starting July 1, keep that in mind if you’re getting on I-65 to go downstate, or are heading east on I-80 or I-94 (it’s not a huge problem if you’re headed west, as left lanes become turn-only lanes once you cross into Illinois). Even if you’re driving the speed limit or the unwritten but acceptable few mph above it, and the guy coming up behind you is a reckless speed demon, it’s still your responsibility to get over and let them pass. In effect, Indiana has put speeders in the right.
This is but a taste of the havoc the bro state could unleash on the Hoosier State. Soon, speed limits could become speed minimums, followed by the advent of speed cameras like our neighbor in Illinois, but instead used to punish those who drive too slowly. Then, not only will more environmentally friendly vehicles be banned, but the obnoxious practice of coal-rolling will be made mandatory…
Okay, maybe my paranoid imagination is overreacting. But this is still a stupid law. If someone’s driving dangerously slow on the highway, I could see that warranting a ticket, but people observing the speed limit should not be punished and certainly not have to yield to reckless drivers who are breaking it.
We’ve all come across cars going slow on the highway. And we’ve probably passed them, left them behind, and continued on our trips without a second thought. We don't need laws legislating etiquette on the highway or elsewhere that puts irresponsible actions like speeding in higher legal standing.