Government officials often assume the position of taking official action to protect their constituency from themselves. Some disdainfully refer to it as “the nanny state,” arguing that, say, riding a motorcycle without a helmet is their birthright.
There may well be some who think the Geneva City Council’s decision this week to close a portion of Westville Avenue is government overreach. We’re not among them. In fact, we’re more aligned with the supportive camp. Much of the roadway is neglected and rarely used, and apparently serves little purpose beyond surreptitious trash dumping and risky behavior.
This week’s action was no doubt prompted by the deaths of three Geneva High School cheerleaders and the injury of two others in a Christmas Day crash along Westville Avenue beyond a rise that officials say draws thrill seekers.
“The main purpose of closing this portion of the roadway is to prevent any other teenagers from traveling the area for thrills,” Geneva Mayor Frankie Lindsey said about the council’s decision Monday night. “We want all of our children to travel safe, and we believe this is the best solution for this area of that road.”
It’s a prudent move by the commission. To be thorough, the commission should also conduct an inventory of other roadways in its purview to see what other road conditions might appeal to daring motorists, as they’ll almost certainly seek such themselves.