Blaming the accident victim

A pedestrian was hit by a car crossing Humphrey Street in Swampscott yesterday--Labor Day. I was out for a walk down by the beach with KK and M--we didn't see it happen, but came along after the police and the ambulance had arrived and a small crowd had gathered.

The general consensus of the crowd: "Oh, that poor driver!"

The sun was probably in his eyes! It's so hard to drive on Humphrey Street, what with all the people walking around! The nerve of those pedestrians!

"They just walk right out into the crosswalk," one woman squawked.

"Well, you are supposed to stop when people are trying to cross in the crosswalk," the guy next to her said, though he didn't sound like he was really 100% behind that concept.

The woman waved her hand dismissively. "Pedestrians can say they have the right of way all the way to the hospital."

We crossed the street--carefully. As we crossed I heard a police officer and an older man talking.

"You know, this time of day the sun is really strong. It was probably shining right in his eyes. Anyway, it's hard to see people in the crosswalks down here. And they just don't watch where they're going when they cross the street."

That was the POLICE OFFICER talking.

I couldn't stand it any more--I HAD to say something.

"You know, the sun might have been in his eyes, but it doesn't mean he doesn't have to be careful," I said. "I walk down here all the time and you can take a step into. the. crosswalk. And they still don't stop. They just stare right at you as they drive by."

And you know what the cop says to me?

"Well, it's not just a problem here, you know."

Oh, well, then I guess it really wasn't the driver's fault!* The sun was in his eyes, he couldn't be bothered to put on a pair of sunglasses, flip down his visor, and slow the hell down! The pedestrian had the balls to actually cross in the crosswalk and assume that he would not be run over! And, hell, accidents like that happen everywhere! We can't be expected to do anything about them here!

According to the police log, the man was transported by ambulance to the hospital with a leg injury. As far as I could tell from the brief item in the log, there were no arrests made--no tickets issued.

But don't worry, I'm sure they'll catch up with and punish that rotten pedestrian as soon as he's out of the hospital.

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