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Phenomem of car addiction - Essay Example

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At the beginning of the XXI century, car culture is nothing more than a social scourge. That is why it is possible to call this phenomenon "car addiction" which is closely connected with cultural, psychological, social, economic and political effects and has a great impact on our life…
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Phenomem of car addiction
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Download file to see previous pages And every year the rate of new car owners increases.
Since the first automobile was invented its image promised to make everyone a pioneer to a better life, it means realization of the American dream. All of dreams associated with wealth and luxury have been transferred to the car culture, and fast driving as a part of it. "Fast cars pervaded North American life throughout the 1970s, reaching their zenith in 1979 when there were an estimated 30 million fast car users, representing 13.7 per cent of the population" ("Fast cars destroy communities", 1999). Once a person becomes a car owner he or she will never refuse to live without automobile. Another problem is that present day prestige and fashion is more of importance than global warming, pollution problems and so on. "For the second time in a month, statistics have shown a dramatic increase in the number of teens who use fast cars." ("Fast cars destroy communities", 1999). Car addiction is strong enough if people prefer to ignore the fact that tens of thousands of people killed in car crashes each year on America highways
In some degree, the phenomenon of car addiction is created by skillful marketing and advertising strategies of car manufacturers. There is a false need fabricated in buyer's minds by the automakers that they are getting a vehicle that will take them anywhere anytime (Witzel, 1997). Recent years there is a tendency to the rising sales of small sport trucks and vans. Unfortunately, these vehicles are less efficient, and release more greenhouse gases into the atmosphere than compact cars. Most of these vehicles are purchased not for there off-road performance, but because of the massive advertising by car manufacturers, and end up being used mostly for single-occupant highway and city driving. The research states that "the average SUV-buying American is highly unlikely to purchase a G-wagen. When Nader and Goldberg test drove the vehicle last fall, its 150 owners were concentrated mainly in wealthy sections of Southern California and New York City suburbs" (Shaver, 2001). Still, they pollute and waste energy and a lot of people do not necessarily need them. "Americans like SUVs because of their safety, status symbol, power" (Shaver, 2001). It will be difficult to persuade them to buy another models of cars or live without automobiles. The possible explanation of this phenomenon is that years of advertising campaign have created an image of "a safe car" for the whole family. Still, the phenomenon of car addiction exists and flourishes, as the rate of car sales increases greatly from year to year (Witzel, 1997).
It is possible to refute all the facts mentioned above saying that a car is an integral part of our life helping people to keep abreast of time, but not a realization of the American dream or desire to be cool. Cars are really important in many areas and, in this very case, we cannot speak about car addition. As for Southern California it is possible to say that communication is impossible without automobiles because "California is nearly inaccessible without a car" (Introduction To California Driving, 2005). People are not addicted to cars, and they just use cars to safe time and efforts, and make their life more comfortable and "speedy". "Their '"economizing", their reduction of "costs" is our intensification and rationalization of work" (Witzel, 1997). To ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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