Parallel with Rousseau

In his Discourse on Inequality (1754), Rousseau proposed the idea of “the state of nature”, a period in human life when natural compassion held sway and ensured equality (Theo Hobson, Guardian). With civilisation, this primal equality disappeared, chiefly because property was invented. “From how many crimes, wars and murders,” wrote Rousseau, “from how many horrors and misfortunes might not anyone have saved mankind, by pulling up the stakes … and crying to his fellows: you are undone if you once forget that the fruits of the earth belong to us all, and the earth itself to nobody.” The parallel here? With traffic regulation, equality disappeared, because priority was invented. How many deaths, bereavements, injuries, expense, horrors and injustices might we have spared humankind by scrapping priority and crying to our fellow man: we are all undone if we forget that the fruits of the public realm belong to all road-users in equal measure!

About Martin Cassini

Campaign founder and video producer, pursuing traffic system reform to make roads safe, civilised and efficient
This entry was posted in Uncategorized and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.