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Bates 1

Tiera Bates
Professor Sheila Neilson
World Literature 2112
February 2, 2015
Away With the Automobile!
What is the point of a car? I understand that they get us to specific destinations like work
and school. They take us to grocery stores, and friends houses. But besides those insignificant
places, are cars really necessary? In actuality, cars cause more harm than good to the
environment, and the human population. Cars are the main culprits for air pollution and traffic
accidents.
The car that you drive to work and school requires gasoline to operate. When a cars
engine is running, carbon monoxide (CO), and air pollutants are emitted into the air. Carbon
monoxide is a poisonous gas emitted primarily by cars and trucks. If inhaled, CO will block
oxygen from the brain, heart and other vital organs. In addition to CO, the air pollutants that is
emitted is the leading cause of cancer. The International Agency for Research on Cancer reported
223,000 deaths from lung cancer was cause from air pollutants.
In addition to air pollution, cars are the main reason for car accidents, hence the name
CAR accidents. When you are driving, you dont just focus on the road, you have to pay
attention your phone, in case someone calls you for an emergency. You also have to program
your GPS, check your makeup, and fiddle around with the radio to get the perfect tune. All these
are a distraction, and can cause accidents that can put you and other people in danger. In 2009,
the United States Department of Transportation reported 10.8 million motor vehicle accidents in
the U.S., which had a .06 increase from the year before. There are approximately 300 million

Bates 2

people in the United States. If car accidents were to double every year, the United States
population would be wiped out in less than five years. People are either going to die by a car
accident, or from breathing the hazardous chemicals produced by cars. I think it is agreeable that
we can do without cars, unless you want to die from those two things. If you do not want to die
from one of those two things, riding a bicycle would be your best option for staying alive.
Bikes are relatively inexpensive compared to a car bikes can range from $50 to $200,
while a car will cost you thousands. In addition to not purchasing a car, you dont have to buy
gas for your car. In 2011, the price of gas was $4.00. Most car tanks can hold up to twenty
gallons of gas. Twenty times four is $80. If you were to fill up your car every day for a month,
you would have spent $2,240 on just gas alone. Think of how much stuff you could buy if you
werent spending it on gas.
Furthermore, by using a bike for transportation, you will be able to get into shape. Many
people dont have time to work out because they have jobs, and a family to take care of. The lack
of exercise will result into obesity. More than 1/3 of U. S. adults are obese; to combat on obesity,
experts like Christine Mattheis say people should exercise every day for at least 30 minutes. Bike
riding is a form of exercise that helps you lose weight, and tones your entire body. Women and
men around the world have reported building their muscles, and losing more than twenty pounds
by riding a bike.
By using a bike as a form of transportation, you are essentially killing two birds with one
stone. You are able to save money, and have a toned physique. With the surplus money you now
have, you can buy new clothes, shoes, and jewelry. With your new body, you will be able to
attract more people into your life; because no one would associate with you if you are
overweight and out of shape.

Bates 3

Many thoughts might be running through your head like What about during the winter
when it is below 0 degrees. Yes, cars do supply you with warm heat, but with the money that
you would save without a car, you could buy the most expensive furs to keep you warm. Ah,
what about getting to work? More than half of American workers live within five miles of their
workplace which is only about 20 minutes. For the minority people that live further away from
work, they can just look for new jobs that are closer to home. What about my family who lives
in another state? I understand you cant necessarily ride a bike to a different state, but there is an
alternative a plane. Planes dont emit as much toxic fumes into the environment, and when
have you ever heard of a plane accident? I understand that cars are more comfortable than
bicycles, and they represent a form of social class. They also get you to your destination quicker.
But are they really worth risking your life? Why be afraid of dying every day because of a car,
when you can just ride a bike.

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Citations
Hatfield, Heather. Your Exercise Routine: How Much Is Enough. WebMD. 2009. LLC.
Web. 30 Jan 2015.
Mattheis, Christine. 7 Reasons to Start Bike Riding. Womens Health. Np. Print.
Straif, Kurt, Cohen, Aaron, and Samet, Jonathan. IARC Scientific Publication No. 161
Air Pollution and Cancer. Lyon, France: International Agency for Research on
Cancer, 2013. Print.
United States. Census Bureau. Transportation: Motor Vehicle Accidents and Fatalities.
Table 1103. Motor Vehicle AccidentsNumber and Deaths: 1990 to 2009. Web.
30 Jan 2015.