English 10 Honors
November 19, 2013
Argument Based Essay
A seat belt is a restraining device installed in a vehicle to prevent or minimize the force of an injury during a crash (“Seat Belts” 5). Although it is also known as a safety belt, the “safety” part is the key issue that is causing much controversy around drivers, manufacturers, and researchers alike. The main idea around the debate is the fact that although research indicates that when seat belts are used properly they save lives, opponents argue that mandating their use can actually cause more harm than good in some cases and is an infringement on personal rights. Car accidents are the leading cause of death for people under 35. Due to the fact that at least 40,000 people die each year in car accidents, the law that mandates seatbelts on all drivers/passengers in vehicles should stay in place.
Although Seat Belts have been shown to provide safety to drivers and passengers who use them, not everyone is a fan of the mandatory seat belt laws. Opponents who are against the idea of mandatory seat belt laws say that they might be safer without seat belts and that airbags will protect them. Many people argue that they may be safer without seat belts. According to the article “Seat Belts” “In high-speed collisions where crash forces are extreme, seat belts have been linked to life-threatening conditions, including cardiac arrests and injuries to the chest, abdomen, or neck” (5). They put forward this idea because they feel that seat belts are causing more harm than good. However, airbags were never made to take the place of a seatbelt, and when worn with a seatbelt, they increase the effectiveness of it by 40%. Airbags also don’t protect from side-impacts at all so they aren’t safer than seatbelts. Another argument opponents against seatbelts have is that mandatory seatbelt laws are a violation of freedom. They claim that they should have a choice...
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