Nearly a week after "World News Tonight" soft-pedaled criticism of Arizona speed cameras, the ABC evening newscast reported on a mini-documentary by Atlanta college students demonstrating the dangers obeying the 55 mile-per-hour speed limit.
Substitute co-anchor Diane Sawyer narrated her March 1story over footage of a documentary created by Georgia State University (GSU) students who tied up traffic on Interstate 285, known locally as "The Perimeter," by driving abreast of each other at exactly 55 miles per hour, the posted speed limit. Sawyer then cited a recent ABC News poll that showed that 89 percent of drivers admitted to driving over the speed limit, while 24 percent admitted to doing so frequently.
Closing her feature, and the newscast, substitute co-anchor Diane Sawyer concluded that "laws there for the common good" like speed limits "need a little wiggle room just to get through."
That perspective was missing from reporter Miguel Marquez’s traffic camera story a week earlier on the February 22 "World News Tonight."
The Free Market Project documented how Marquez ignored libertarian and conservative critiques of how governments use speed cameras as revenue enhancers under the guise of law enforcement and safety. Marquez also concluded his segment with a hint of approval of speed camera proliferation, remarking that “If traffic accidents are down, it could be coming to a freeway near you."
But at one point during Sawyer’s report, however, the ABC anchor aired footage of how everyone strictly obeying the speed limit could cause traffic accidents.
The Reason.com Web log post that links to the GSU speeding documentary can be found here.