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Old 01-26-2013, 11:47 PM
 
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[quote=nybbler;27959678]Again, this last statement is fallacious. If living without a car means depending on something else, you cannot say that freedom is lesser in an absolute sense.
In a place that's not car-dependent you have more options. You can live in, say, San Francisco, and own a car, or not own a car. You can own a car, but not use it for every trip. But if you live in, say, Sugarland, Texas, where there's no transit whatsoever (thanks to Tom Delay, among others), you don't have the option to use transit. And in a lot of places with little or no transit, biking or walking to reach destinations, doesn't work very well.

Another way to think about it--Would you feel stranded if your car broke down? Again using San Francisco, you might well be inconvenienced, you might even have to cancel or defer certain trips. If you had a car, you'd probably want to fix it, though I've certainly read of cases where a breakdown pushed someone to ditch their car. But however much you wanted the car back you wouldn't be trapped in your unit. There are plenty of places where you would be effectively trapped without immediate and constant access to a car.
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Old 01-26-2013, 11:52 PM
 
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I think owning a car gives you a huge sense of freedom. I love knowing that i can go anywhere in the city, state or country whenever i feel like it. Even though i don't really need a car right now (i can walk to most things i need) i still like having it so i can go to events across town or visit friends. I think for most people in the country it is a freedom. I could only imagine it being more of a restriction if you lived in a very dense city with expensive parking facilities and bad traffic.
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Old 01-27-2013, 07:01 AM
 
Location: Laurentia
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Is the car a restriction or freedom? Freedom, definitely. Unlike any other form of transportation, owning a car (and roads to go with it) enables you to go where you want, when you want, with the people you want. Public transportation is, well, public, so you have to tangle with other people all the time, and you are totally dependent on an outside entity for your transportation, and you have to abide by their schedule (not to mention their restrictions, like TSA and the airlines).

As for car dependency being a restriction, I suppose it is, but the same can and should be said for any other form of transportation. The fact is that all modes of transport offer distinct advantages and disadvantages, and to be dependent on just one method of transportation is generally a bad thing. It should be noted that a region can have plenty of cars without having car dependency. They do not have to go hand in hand, and contrary to the beliefs of the car-haters, you do not have to suppress the automobile to have a well-balanced transportation system. All you have to do is offer and/or support a variety of choices that suit people's needs. Most big cities in developed countries have that already figured out.
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Old 01-27-2013, 07:11 AM
Status: "Summer!" (set 17 days ago)
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
86,995 posts, read 102,568,112 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nighthouse66 View Post
its funny because i am going through a bit of this tussle right now.
i had been without my car for almost a year. i had driven cross country back to GA from CA, and then decided to move back to los angeles 8 months later. i left my car in GA, where it was til christmas. actually, it isn't a car, its a 3/4 ton van, with bookshelves, a sink, and a bed. me and my uncle just drove it across and so now i have a car again, as well as all the rest of my belongings.

thing is, i learned to love- ADORE- living without a car. i work at home, and go to school, and i can walk to the train station, go to union station (a building i adore) and then take the train to school. i live in a great neighborhood where my bank, grocery stores, dollar stores, etc are all within a few blocks of each other. i don't HAVE to go anywhere else. and i have learned to love it. nothing better than just setting off on foot knowing you don't have to worry about parking, traffic, or anything else. lugging your groceries home is a small price to pay for that.

now that i have my car i never drive, just move it to one street or another on street cleaning days. i like taking it out for a joyride, but i have no interest- ever again- in having a job where a car is needed. i want to maintain this sort of lifestyle. the idea that a car is a LUXURY feels right to me. i know not everyone can live like this, but i am lucky to say that i can. and i like the idea that a car is just for fun, that it is a privilege, almost like owning a boat. you don't NEED a boat, but its fun to have. that's where i am with car ownership. i can't think of anything more ghastly than getting that lazy again where i hop in my car and drive a few miles just to go to a particular store. i LOVE walking and am stronger and in better shape than ever. walking is just way more fun. and there is something about shopping more often (because you can't do a big shop and carry it all home) that feels almost european to me. if i had a car i would have just done a big shop once a week or two weeks and that be it. now i shop every 3 days or so. and i walk to do it. it just feels right to me and i am blessed that i had no car for 10 months so i could learn to live like this. it is truly the best.
While I'm glad you love your lifestyle, I like to think of my life as being a little beyond my immediate neighborhood. My time is also valuable to me, and I don't like to spend a lot of it at the grocery store.
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Old 01-27-2013, 07:30 AM
 
Location: Laurentia
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Katiana View Post
While I'm glad you love your lifestyle, I like to think of my life as being a little beyond my immediate neighborhood. My time is also valuable to me, and I don't like to spend a lot of it at the grocery store.
If my life was pretty much confined to my immediate neighborhood, it would be very boring and even confining. I prefer to spread my wings over large areas, and a road trip (by car of course) is usually (though not always) the best way to do that. Everyone is different and has different taste, so if your tastes differ from mine I will accept that.
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Old 01-27-2013, 07:38 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Patricius Maximus View Post
If my life was pretty much confined to my immediate neighborhood, it would be very boring and even confining. I prefer to spread my wings over large areas, and a road trip (by car of course) is usually (though not always) the best way to do that. Everyone is different and has different taste, so if your tastes differ from mine I will accept that.
People who live in non-car dependent neighborhoods still have the option to go elsewhere when they desire - its just they can meet most of life's necessities with a quick walk. People in car dependent neighborhoods have no other option but to drive elsewhere for the necessities in life.

Non car dependent neighborhoods offer more freedom, not less.
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Old 01-27-2013, 07:45 AM
Status: "Summer!" (set 17 days ago)
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
86,995 posts, read 102,568,112 times
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^^But we weren't talking about neighborhoods, we were talking about having or not having a car.
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Old 01-27-2013, 07:47 AM
 
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The term "car dependent" is an adjective that describes a place. Those places are almost always neighborhoods of one kind or another.
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Old 01-27-2013, 07:52 AM
Status: "Summer!" (set 17 days ago)
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
86,995 posts, read 102,568,112 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Komeht View Post
The term "car dependent" is an adjective that describes a place. Those places are almost always neighborhoods of one kind or another.
But you can have a car in a non car dependent neighborhood, and live a car dependent lifestyle. Also, car dependency is in the eyes of the beholder at times. Someone may just not know about other transportation options.
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Old 01-27-2013, 08:17 AM
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Location: Long Island / NYC
45,987 posts, read 41,947,535 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Patricius Maximus View Post
If my life was pretty much confined to my immediate neighborhood, it would be very boring and even confining. I prefer to spread my wings over large areas, and a road trip (by car of course) is usually (though not always) the best way to do that. Everyone is different and has different taste, so if your tastes differ from mine I will accept that.
Most of what I need is within my local neighborhood. Before I had a car, a bicycle or the local bus service took care of most things beyond. Most of the pictures I've posted of the region, such as here (two posts) and here But I couldn't take road trips to places like here and no long-distance bus trip with any reasonable time exists.

As it owning equals more freedom, since it gives more travel options and flexibility, of course it is more freeing. But having to need a car just to do basic errand or get anywhere outside my house is restrictive and then the car becomes an object of no choice rather than something increasing freedom.
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