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$1 Billion Subsidy for Walking Children Home from School

Written by Gary North on June 5, 2012

The United States government since 2005 has spent almost $1 billion to fund parents to walk their children home from school.

This is part of a program called  “Safe Routes To School” which operates in all 50 states. The government has issued a “Safe Streets Toolkit.” It offers communities a comprehensive guide on how to organize and get their hands on their share of the loot — sorry, the federal funds that Make America Better.

This program is big, and it will get bigger. America must be re-made!

In order to encourage more children to walk and bike, parents need to trust that it’s both safe and convenient from a variety of perspectives. Traffic on neighborhood roads and streets is a large impediment to most children walking or biking to school.

To create a safe route for every child, there should be ample room to walk and bike, preferably separated from traffic. Every major road crossing needs a safe and visible crosswalk and sometimes traffic controls and crossing guards.

Basically, you’re the problem, Lard-O. You don’t travel by bicycle

Adults should lead by example. In communities where the bicycle is more accepted and used extensively by adults for short trips, there will be higher levels of children bicycling to schools. For example, the City of Davis, California, has 30 miles of bike trails and 35 miles of continuous bike lanes, including 11 grade-separated intersections and special bicycle traffic signals; in Davis, bicycles are used for more than 20 percent of all transportation trips with hundreds of bicycles crowding the bike racks at the middle school.

Davis, California is the home of the University of California, Davis. It’s the “ag school” of the University of California system.The people who are employed by this program want all Americans to be like Davis.

Are there lots of federal employees who bike to work in Washington, D.C.? No. Do they plan to? No.  But the ones who work inside this program want you to.

Maybe you’re wondering why the federal government has spent money on this program. For the same reason that Sir Edmund Hillary gave when asked why he climbed Mt. Everest: “Because it’s there.”

All that money, so little time!

In Wisconsin, a regional planning commission was awarded over $900,000 to assist schools that couldn’t figure out how to help children walk home.  This would be a logical use of taxpayer money only if parents truly are inept.  Unfortunately, the professionals in charge of educating their children likely are even more so.  If this is truly the case, why not give these people a simple fact sheet with bullet points?  Option A: Walk your children home.  Option B: Have in-laws or grandparents walk children home.  Option C: Alternate pick-up days with friends.   If parents and educators don’t have enough common sense to reach such conclusions, $900,000 isn’t going to fix this.

This kind of negativism is why the federal government will have to spend another billion dollars — maybe more — over the next seven years. Negativism is not what America is all about. Spending a billion dollars to help school districts  teach parents how to walk children home is what America is all about.

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4 thoughts on “$1 Billion Subsidy for Walking Children Home from School

  1. Teach street safety in kindergarten! Cars can kill your little a$$ etc. Teach them at home perK. Now let Darwin's theory go into effect. Get rid of those stupid 20MPH zones, that's billions of dollars in lost time every day! Fire those lazy worthless crossing guards! THINK, how many tens of thousands of these parasites are there setting in a lawn chair every single week day! How many billions does this cost? Sorry I'm n a roll! How about those wheel chair curb cut outs? That's $500 a corner! $500! and every intersection has four corners!!! AHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!! Stupidity!!!!!! Look around you! How many intersections have we wasted $2,000 on? MILLIONS! Times $2,000 EACH!!! Handicap parking spaces! 20 or 30 in a row! WITH NOT A CAR IN THEM!!!!!!
    WHY? Why do I have to park a mile away? Watch who gets out of a car that finally parks in a handicap spot! Most are not handicaped they are just FAT! Stop The Stupid America!!!!! Stop It ALL! Look who's in our White House! AHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!! America is DOOMED!
    STUPID ! STUPID! STUPID! We are all just STUPID!

  2. I know your frustration, but there have been children killed who have obeyed the traffic laws. In my opinion 20 mph is a little fast for a school district. 15 mph is what I was used to in the south and if not complied with, one was warned or pulled over.
    However, it shouldn't be the gov's responsibility to "pay" parents to walk their children to school. They should be doing it out of love for the child and to teach how to safely walk to school. Also, the cut outs in the curbs are useful to wheelchair people who want nothing more than to be a little less dependent and have the ability to get around like the rest of us. They have a hard enough time without our denying them a little convenience. I do agree though that some parking lots go a little overboard with the number of handy capped spaces provided. Sometimes a real handicap is not as visible as we think, but there are some that I wouldn't put in a handicapped category either. However, when they are finally truly handicapped they will maybe wish they could park in other spaces without difficulty.

  3. Thanks glop – you put it a lot more nicely than I was going to.

  4. Public_Citizen says:

    This is a great example of government waste in action.
    The whole program, including the administrator positions could be eliminated and ~~nobody~~ would notice the difference.
    Oh – except for the local bureaucrats being kicked out of the hog trough when the pork gets cut.