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Use common sense -- don't text while driving your car

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other opinions Detroit Lakes, 56501
Detroit Lakes Minnesota 511 Washington Avenue 56501

If you send a text message via cell phone while driving, you're breaking Minnesota law. You would also be violating the law in 17 other states, including California.

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And, if you were in the Golden State and on your cell phone while behind the wheel of a moving car, you could well face the wrath of Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger -- if he holds others in the state to the same standard as his wife.

The Associated Press reported Wednesday that TMZ.com, a celebrity Web site, posted two photographs Tuesday showing California First Lady Maria Shriver with a phone to her ear while driving. Her governor husband -- on his Twitter feed, no less -- wrote: "Thanks for bringing her violations to my attention. There's going to be swift action."

A spokesman for Schwarzenegger later said the "swift action" will be Ah-nold asking his wife to not hold the phone while driving. Phew! But will she face a citation and a fine of at least $20? No word yet.

Meanwhile, in Minnesota, violators of the texting-while-driving law -- valid since Aug. 1, 2008 -- can be charged with petty misdemeanors. And there's more. Sen. Amy Klobuchar is now working in Washington as a co-sponsor of legislation that would require all states to pass laws that ban writing, reading and sending of text or e-mail messages while operating a motor vehicle. States that don't eventually comply would lose one quarter of their federal highway funding.

While we don't necessarily object to the concept of these laws, we do question their enforceabilty. More importantly, though, we think all drivers should simply use common sense for the safety of themselves and others -- regardless of someone you love promising "swift action" otherwise. -- Worthington Daily Globe

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