Ups and Downs of Uber

Arrive in style, or dead

A post shared by vince michel (@lennonrevolver) on

Hey y’all, here goes my attempt at connected writing. Story number 1 tells the tale of Uber, the popular ride-share service, contributing to a decrease in drunken driving deaths in Virginia. One Uber driver is sure that ride-sharing is keeping drunk people off the roads, saying “I’d say I pick up at least 20 drunk people on a given Friday or Saturday night. A lot of people that I’ve given rides to say that if it wasn’t for Uber, they’d chance it and probably drink and drive.” Alcohol related fatalities on the roadway have dropped 22% in Virginia from 2014 to 2015.

This type of story shows Uber as a great service which helps keep people safer.

Tale number two is quite the opposite. On Feb 21st 2016 in Michigan, an Uber driver is responsible for a shooting rampage that left six dead and two wounded. Jason Dalton started his rampage about 6pm and apparently chose his victims at random over a four hour period at three separate locations in Kalamazoo Michigan. During this time, he continued to pick up Uber riders and drop them off in-between the shootings. One man who got an Uber ride from Dalton at about 8pm tweeted, “Lucky to be alive.”

Despite these two stories happening in different states, the Uber service remains the same. Unstable lunatics like Dalton create tragedy all the time, and I’m not saying it should reflect poorly upon Uber. Could Dalton have been preventing drunken driving deaths at the same time he caused the deaths of his victims? I feel these two stories were kind of intriguing when put side by side. For every up there is a down. Uber is reducing alcohol related fatalities on the road, and there is a dark side.



One thought on “Ups and Downs of Uber

  1. I used Uber for the first time when I was on vacation last week and saved a lot on transportation fees. When we first arrived, the taxi cab from the airport to the hotel cost approximately $65 for three people. Using Uber to return to the airport cost less than $20 and that included getting stuck in traffic for a good half hour. If there’s anything to say about Uber, it’s definitely the cheap fees. Interesting that you posted the article on Jason Dalton because I was just thinking how anybody can be an Uber driver, even people like Dalton and the risk you are putting yourself into when getting into a random car. I also viewed it from the perspective of the driver. What if the drunks are the aggressors trying to fight or start something with the driver? It can go either way. What happened in MI is a terrible tragedy for the victims. I would always err on the side of caution and go with your gut when put in a situation that could likely cause harm to yourself.

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