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Consumer Safety Commission's Ban on Selling 3-Wheeled ATVs

January 16, 1988

Your editorial "Fun and Death" (Jan. 5) is noble in intent, but bad in precedent. The intent is to make all-terrain vehicle riding a safer pastime. The precedent is that you are asking the government to step in to substitute for parental responsibility.

You can only legislate so much safety in this world of ours. A great many more people, and children, die in bicycling and swimming mishaps than in all-terrain vehicle accidents. Do you want the government to require bicyclists to wear helmets, to make swimmers get licensed before they go in the water?

A child can do himself mischief on an ATV (whether it has three or four wheels), on a bicycle, in a swimming pool or an ocean if he or she is not properly supervised. Your editorial recommends that the federal government become in loco parentis in the ATV field.

Just how far would you like to extend government authority?

By supporting the government's ban on three-wheeled ATVs, you open the door for silly, meddling bureaucrats to ban anything their strait-laces don't like, from hang-gliders to motorcycles. What a boring world you must envisage!

CLEMENT SALVADORI

Laguna Beach

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