Not only are parents wary of letting their children walk to school, it has gotten to the point where even the bus is eschewed. Parent after parent drives the little darling straight to the school's front door. True, some students have early morning or after-school obligations, but more often than not, it is a convenience, allowing students that extra ten minutes of sleep or the luxury of being lax in one's schedule. The traffic snaking around school buildings every morning leaves cars idling while buses pull into the parking lot only a third full.
In that same edition of the Times, a book about new urbanism was reviewed, calling for people to embrace neighborhoods which encourage pedestrian behavior. It's an idea I fully embrace, but I can't help wondering if parents would still use the car, no matter how close the distance. And what would we lose in the process?