Racing toward idiocy

A column by Mike Myer, executive editor of  The Intelligencer/Wheeling News-Register 

WHEELING, W.Va. — Ladies and gentlemen, don’t you dare start those racing engines!

When I heard about the Environmental Protection Agency’s new plan on Friday, I thought someone was pulling an April Fool’s Day joke on me. But no, it’s for real.

Now, the EPA is going after car racers.

Exactly what the agency plans remains a bit unclear, but rest assured it’s a foot in the door to come down hard on anyone who enjoys motor sports of any kind.

For now, the EPA wants to make it illegal to alter a car or truck for racing, even if that’s the only use intended for it. That opens up an enormous can of worms. Taken to its logical end, it could mean even professional racers will have trouble if they buy engines and alter them for racing.

It certainly means you dare not soup up the family jalopy and take it to the dragstrip – something lots and lots of people do. I still have some trophies in my basement from my (much) younger days. Our first washer and dryer won with prize money from a dragstrip near Fairmont.

Of course, the EPA’s claim is that people who decide to get more horsepower out of their vehicles – and rest assured, ATVs and boats are next – are contributing to global warming.

That’s absurd. Shut down every altered vehicle, from the kid with the buzzy Honda in your neighborhood to all the folks on NASCAR tracks, and my guess is you’d reduce average temperatures by around a trillionth of a degree. It’s just not a big problem.

So why is the EPA doing it? Heaven only knows. Perhaps the politicians at the agency put two and two together – car racing is more popular in the South, and so are conservatives – and decided the proposed rule would be a good way to get back at some of its opponents.

We won’t go down without a fight. Already, West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey and Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine have joined a coalition of other states to fight the EPA proposal. Good for them.

In Washington, quite a few Democrat and Republican politicians are scratching their heads and wondering why Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders are so popular. Why the sudden anti-establishment fervor?

Well, let’s think about that. Could it be that people are sick and tired of the idiocy and meddling in our lives that emanates from Washington – and just as upset no one there will stop it?

Myer can be reached at: [email protected].

To read more from The Intelligencer/Wheeling News-Register, subscribe here. 

Comments are closed.

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

And get our latest content in your inbox

Invalid email address