Why I Don’t Drive

It’s no secret that those without cars are second-class citizens.

Not having a car in America, especially in the suburban sprawl of metro-Atlanta, makes you a pariah. People look at you funny. You’re passed over for job openings, rejected as a romantic partner, and generally considered lacking in ambition, confidence, and ability. In other words, a red flag.

Let’s ignore for the moment how this reflects people’s subconscious bias against people in poverty and people with disabilities and focus instead on just how damaging such a belief is.

Listen. Not having a car does not make you any less of a person. It does not make you any less capable or responsible or ambitious than anyone else.

For years, I didn’t drive out of plain old fear. Learning to drive was traumatic due to this fear and my own inability to intuit certain unwritten rules of the road. I lacked confidence, was certain I’d die in a fireball the moment I got behind the wheel. My teachers did little to assuage my fears or build my confidence. I can’t blame them. They did the best they could.

Driving never came naturally to me. I have zero presence behind the wheel. Even today, the prospect of traveling at high speeds fills me more with dread and apprehension than the thrill of excitement. I never enjoyed racing with other kids as a child, and I still despise running.

Today, I do not have my driver’s license, and I am ok with that. I do not own a car, and I do not want one. (I’d rather like a Vespa, but that’s probably not going to happen any time soon.)

I am a little resentful at a culture that seems hell-bent on forcing me to get my license simply to have any hope of stable housing, gainful employment, or romantic prospects, but such is life.

I am fully mobile without a car. I will continue moving forward, one foot in front of the other.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.