Readers React: Why do drivers have bad manners? Because cars dehumanize us

Traffic makes its way through the Sepulveda Pass on the 405 Freeway in August.
(Los Angeles Times)

To the editor: Michael Krikorian misses the point in his op-ed article asking drivers to show gratitude when other motorists show them some courtesy.

Our automobiles dehumanize us. The same woman in Krikorian’s piece who refuses to acknowledge our courtesy while allowing her car to pass before our car would be quick to acknowledge our personal courtesy in allowing her to pass if we were fellow pedestrians on the sidewalk.

You will discover more of a person’s nature by spending 15 minutes as a passenger in his automobile than you will discover over 15 days as a guest in his home.

Mark Robbins, Oak View



To the editor: I read in solidarity Krikorian’s op-ed article admonishing the many drivers who fail to thank their fellow motorists who allow them to merge or make a left turn during bad traffic.

If Krikorian happens to be reading this, I suggest he that get a decent sized piece of cardboard and a black marker and write in big letters, “Are you going to thank me?” He should flash that sign when necessary.

It works for me.


Joe Kevany, Mount Washington


To the editor: Krikorian bemoans the lack of courtesy by California drivers. He also mentions, without a sense of irony, “doing about 80, 85” on the 405 Freeway, adjacent to the fast lane.

This may be a shock to Krikorian, but speeding on the 405 reveals a lack of concern for the lives of his fellow travelers, something that is far worse than a lack of courtesy.

Bob Lentz, Sylmar

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