Waze is not alone. Just about every app, every text, every call requires the user to distract him or herself in one or more of the three aforementioned ways.
Even if it's voice-activated, you're distracted, if for no reason other than the fact that you still need to do some combination of talk, touch, look and listen. The technology to make these things safe to use while driving is simply not there yet.
And until it is, assuming it can ever get "there," should we really be talking out of both sides of our mouth on the issue?
We refuse to take distracted driving seriously for the same reasons we have never addressed the larger issue of traffic-related deaths.
We chalk up the resultant danger and death as the costs of doing business. Collateral damage. We can't mess with the economy. We can't mess with technological "progress." We can't screw with the revenue streams of everybody from Apple to the automakers to their partners.
I'm not riding a high horse here. I break the law and endanger myself and others on every rare occasion that I drive a car. If I buy a car, I'll likely end up doing it more frequently. Color me hypocritical.
As people like to Tweet,
I'm just sayin'
We encourage and perpetuate distracted driving. Any company involved in the space has blood on its hands. So do government regulators. And there's certainly no corporate conscience or political will to change anything anytime soon.
At the time of publication, the author held no positions in any of the stocks mentioned in this article
This article is commentary by an independent contributor, separate from TheStreet's regular news coverage.