Cha Sa-soon with her new license. Be afraid--be very afraid.
It’s one of those items that newspapers and the Web can’t resist: the human- interest story. From South Korea comes the news that Cha Sa-soon, 69, had just gotten her driver’s license. What made it newsworthy was that it took 960 tries to obtain it. Yep—that’s right—she flunked 959 times between April of 2005 and August 2010.
What’s really weird is that no one seems to be questioning whether such a person should be behind the wheel. The testing agency was happy when she passed, her driving school instructors burst into applause, and Hyundai gave her a new car, and she’s now starring in a TV commercial. Has South Korea gone collectively insane?
Shall I raise the obvious? Somebody needs to! The woman is 69, a time in which her reaction time will certainly have slowed. Don’t you think that someone who flunked 959 times might just need a tad more reaction time? And how does one flunk a friggin’ driver’s test 959 times? If you look to the highways and byways in your town you will quickly notice that there are motorists out there with IQs surpassed by the average potted plant. Let’s face it, the only test on the planet easier than a driver’s test is a urine test and if you flunk the first test 959 times it makes one wonder how Cha Sa-soon would fare on the latter. How does one even get to take the test that many times? Note to South Korea: Put a lifetime cap on how many times one can retest.
Second note: Shouldn’t one investigate the qualifications of the driving “school” that Cha Sa-soon attended? If an elementary school flunked a first-grader this many times, wouldn’t you shutter it? And a new car? Sheesh, this woman wouldn’t be safe in a Brinks truck. Suggestion for Cha Sa-soon: Sell the car and buy a water buffalo and cart. To my friend who lives in South Korea: Please don’t drive; it’s not safe.
The only virtue I find in this story is that it makes us realize that the United States doesn’t have the market cornered on bad ideas.--LV