The ‘Right’ to Drive on the Wrong Side of the Road

Photo credit: Mark Buckawicki

Photo credit: Mark Buckawicki

I have previously used analogies involving driving to make points about… well, things besides driving. Anyway, recent events, and discussions about these events, have inspired me to expand on one of these “driving” analogies. Anyone who’s familiar with these events should have no trouble understanding what it’s really about.

Imagine that a group of people demanded a “right” that had never existed before: the “right” to legally drive on the wrong side of the road. What kind of arguments might they try to use to defend their position?


We now join the debate in progress between Other-Side Driving activists and a Defense of Correct Side Driving organization.

OSD: “There is no reason to limit driving to one side of the road. Driving on the other side of the road does no harm.”

DCSD: “But it’s well documented that driving on the wrong side of the road leads to a proportionally greater number of accidents than driving on the correct side.”

Woodrow Wilcox


OSD: “Nonsense. People have accidents on the usual side all the time. In fact, most accidents take place on the usual side.”

DCSD: “That’s just because almost everyone drives on the correct side, not because driving on the other side is safe.”


OSD: “Driving on the other side is perfectly safe as long as it’s done responsibly. One just has to wear a seatbelt and avoid hitting other cars.”

DCSD: “But…”

OSD: “And driving on the other side of the road will be much safer if people are allowed to do it legally. If they can do it legally, they’re much more likely to do it responsibly. Besides, my driving on the other side has no effect on your driving on the usual side.”

DCSD: “But that’s not how it works. And why should anyone be allowed to disregard one of the major rules of the road? If you’re legally allowed to drive on the wrong side of the road, what’s to keep others from, say, wanting to run red lights legally?”

OSD: “Running red lights is completely different from driving on the other side of the road. They’re not even remotely comparable. Running red lights is dangerous and unacceptable.”

DCSD: “But every rule of the road is there for a reason. They all need to be obeyed.”

OSD: “Every other rule of the road is there for a reason. But there’s no compelling legal reason to restrict which side of the road people can drive on.”

DCSD: “But traffic cameras show that, on average, wrong-side drivers violate other rules of the road far more often than right-side drivers.”

OSD: “Totally false. Other-side drivers value safety and responsibility just as much as you usual-side drivers. My driving on the other side is just as good as your driving on the usual side!”

DCSD: “But…”

OSD: “Driving on the other side of the road is no different from driving your car for pleasure rather than to work. Are you going to tell us that driving should only be allowed if you’re driving to work?”

DCSD: “Of course not, but…”

OSD: “Disallowing driving on the other side of the road is discriminatory! We demand equal driving rights!”

DCSD: “But you already have equal driving rights. You can drive on the correct side of the road like everyone else.”

OSD: “No! You have to treat our side of the road equally, or you’re a bigot! Just like people in the old days who tried to disallow women from driving! Or like the people who refuse to sell cars to other-side drivers!”

DCSD: “But dealers have a right to refuse service to people who drive on the wrong side of the road. And, in every case where this has happened, the drivers specifically told the dealers they were going to drive on the wrong side of the road.”

OSD: “It’s discriminatory to refuse service to other-side drivers! And we’re going to close down every dealer in the nation who tries to do this!”

DCSD: “Look, no matter what you say, there’s no reason you can’t drive on the correct side like everyone else.”

OSD: “Oh, sure, that’s easy for you to say. You’re a usual-side driver. You can just take your driving rights for granted. You don’t know what it’s like to face the kind of persecution that other-side drivers have had to deal with for decades!”


Now imagine that most of the nation’s courts ruled in favor of the Other-Side Drivers. Scary thought, isn’t it? It’s a good thing nothing like that could happen in real life!

Oh, wait…

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David Mann is a Christian who lives in Florida.
David Mann
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  • Great analogy of the insanity that has taken root in our culture today!