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Road rage

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Richard Jackson | 15:16 UK time, Tuesday, 27 February 2007

Britain was a nation of animal lovers. Or was it shopkeepers?

Radio Five Live logoAnd an Englishman's home was his castle.

But in 2007, have we become a Kingdom united by our love of the car?

Just mention a topic about cars on the radio first thing in the morning, and the response is instantaneous. It might be road pricing, car parking, the cost of petrol or, like this morning, the use of a mobile phone while driving.

Hell hath no fury like a motorist scorned - or at least told by someone else how to behave behind the wheel. Our text service runs hotter that the tarmac on the M25 in the middle of July, the e-mails more jammed than the M6 in the rush-hour.

The anti-car lobby tries to be heard from the sidelines, but it tends to be about as effective as a bicycle bell against a cacophony of car horns. The roar of the traffic drowns out most other opinions.

With more cars on the roads than ever before, we probably shouldn't be surprised. But - after nearly two million people were sent an e-mail by the prime minister because they petitioned the Downing Street website - it seems motorists are learning the power of putting their collective foot down.

We'll keep putting other opinions on air too, but is there a risk they'll increasingly be drowned out by the supporters of the right to drive? Jeremy Clarkson for PM?


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