Ask Amy: My teen feels bad about her speeding ticket, and my wife wants to punish her

Columnist Amy Dickinson (Bill Hogan/Chicago Tribune)

Columnist Amy Dickinson (Bill Hogan/Chicago Tribune)

DEAR AMY: Our 16-year-old, recently licensed daughter was pulled over today for doing 32 in a 20-mph school zone.

She had to enter a four-lane road with heavy traffic and obstructed visibility just below the crest of a hill. She accelerated quickly, in case another car was coming up behind her, and was immediately stopped by a cop who had set up a speed trap for people speeding down the hill (one of the reasons she has anxiety about pulling out into traffic to begin with).

She is not a scofflaw and was very upset by the interaction.

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Her stepmother (my wife) wants to take the car away for three weeks and make her pay any increase in insurance rates that accrue due to this incident, along with any fines. (My daughter doesn’t have a job yet). She’s at her mother’s house now, but will be back with us tomorrow.

I think that’s excessive — motive is important. I believe the consequences should match the severity and willfulness of the act. In this case, I see no willfulness and lots of contrition on her part, so I’m for letting it go with a warning and having her pay any fine she may receive. What say you, Amy? How should we handle this?

Upset Father

DEAR FATHER: Your daughter is an inexperienced driver. All of the adults involved need to understand that everything that happened here (aside from the speeding in a school zone) is a good thing. She should not take routes that scare her until she has more experience and feels ready to handle merging into traffic at the correct rate of speed.

Your daughter didn’t cause a traffic accident (thank goodness). Speed traps are set to make everyone …read more

Source:: The Mercury News – Lifestyle

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