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Stop Convicting Soccer Moms: Change Virginia Reckless Driving Laws

This petition had 91 supporters

In Virginia, the top highway speed limit is 70 mph and driving on an open freeway faster than 80 mph can get you a criminal reckless driving conviction — facing up to one year in jail and fines up to $2,500, plus, thousands of dollars in legal fees. Since the flow of traffic is often 10 or more miles per hour over the speed limit on a freeway, driving with the flow of traffic on a freeway can make you a criminal and get you a year in jail.

It doesn’t make any sense to make criminals out of soccer moms driving with the flow of traffic on the freeway. But too often governments are criminalizing ordinary behavior that used to draw a simple fine. This is a growing problem. As government becomes less responsive and more intrusive, it begins to treat law-abiding citizens, like soccer moms and dads, as subjects over whom it rules — rather than as citizens to be governed with respect and fairness.

Government needs to respect its citizens. When it does, it won’t criminalize insanely idiotic things like driving with the flow of traffic on an open freeway. Reasonable traffic fines are one thing, but criminal convictions and jail time and criminal fines are simply over-the-top, and evidence that the government is unresponsive, unfair and out-of-control.

The Commonwealth of Virginia should be ashamed and embarrassed for criminalizing simply driving with the flow of traffic on Virginia’s open freeways. The government should be serving and protecting law-abiding citizens — not finding new senseless ways to make soccer moms criminals.  

The Governor, the House of Delates and the State Senate all must bear the blame for this unjust and abusive exercise of raw governmental power. For years, Virginia has had the chance to fix this bad law, but instead they have protected special interests and left soccer moms to be unjustly labeled criminals.  This is a disgrace. 

I join thousands of other Virginians in calling upon the Governor and the Virginia’s Delegates and Senators to change the law and making garden-variety speeding a traffic violation, not a crime. Reckless driving should be determined by the facts and circumstances of the event, not by simply driving a little too fast. 


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