Updated: Feb 11
Truck drivers have been making the news a lot lately.
First, the public rallied around Rogel Aguilera-Mederos, a truck driver sentenced to 110 years in prison for an at-fault accident in Colorado. Then, more recently, the Canadian protests over COVID-19 mandates that scammed thousands of hard-working people out of their money under the false pretense it was going to support drivers when it went to the organizers instead.
Unsurprisingly, the media missed every opportunity to have real conversations about the issues facing truck drivers today. The news coverage has been a circus, completely ignoring the problems that drivers really care about and instead focusing on the sensationalism of the moment. That’s the media for you.
Now that it’s a hot button, the politicians and the media are swarming.
Do you know what they’re not talking about?
Changing the FMCSA penalty process, reducing the 34-hour restart, or reform on how drivers continue to be penalized for accidents even when they are found to be not at fault.
Why won’t they talk about these issues? Because they don’t know they exist. They don’t care to know they exist. Because none of the millionaires in Congress have family members who drive for a living. I do. I know. And I care.
My dad has been an owner-operator and hazmat driver across the United States and Canada for 15 years. Based out of Louisiana, my dad has seen and heard it all. He’ll tell you people in Wisconsin swear like sailors and the most beautiful place to drive through is the Moab Gorge in Utah.
He’ll also tell you that not once has any political party – blue, red, green, or unicorn-flavored— ever paid attention to issues around the trucking industry.
Not once has a politician personally reached out to hear what he had to say about problems with the FMCSA process. Not once has someone asked him about the DOT's recent decision to start handing CDL’s to 18-year-olds. And no federal representative ever asked him how recent legislation forcing carriers to hold $5 million in insurance per truck has impacted the industry.
I'll always fight for blue-collar workers, including those like my dad, who keep America going despite the heavy regulations put on the industry that are driving people out of the job. If truckers wanted to, they could shut down the country in a matter of days. Their voice has power, and I plan to listen to and advocate for them.