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Mint Juleps
Sunday, September 19, 2004  
Mayor Bloomberg has recently made efforts to reduce noise in New York City. Noise from ice cream trucks blaring loud music, noise from construction on the streets, perhaps some other kinds of noise too. It is a great idea to reduce unnecessary noise in this city with so many people living so close to each other. And there is one potential target that I’d suggest creates more annoying noise than any other: honking.

The city should enforce laws on unnecessary honking. I see (and hear) it all the time: a car is slow to start as a light turns green, a taxi stops to pick up or drop off a passenger, a car pauses to let people cross the street or when a car can’t turn because a side street is backed up. It doesn’t matter if it is three o’clock in the morning, they will honk.

What you may ask is the solution? Tickets. Not high priced $100 tickets that the police will be reluctant to hand out. $10 tickets. And lots of them.

What else? There is something else. Taxi meters. That’s right, give each taxi about 5 honks per twelve hours. That’s typically one shift. Any more – charge them. $0.50 a honk should do it. Adding to the honking epidemic is that drivers notice that other cars honk frequently. And think “since everyone else is doing it, why shouldn’t I?” Since taxis are a large part of the city traffic, reducing the amount of taxi honking will go a long way toward stopping the copycat honkers

Sunday, September 19, 2004



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