North Texas Daily

Dude, where’s my car?

Dude, where’s my car?

March 28
17:45 2018

After twenty long minutes of overthinking my introduction to this article, I concluded that the only proper way to begin any relationship is with a bit of honesty. Buckle up, everyone.

I have been parking in faculty parking spaces.

And, based on my own anecdotal observations, I have little doubt I am the only student on campus who has been seduced to evil by the sinful lack of parking that our campus has delivered like “The Eleventh Plague.”

Though I have evaded being ticketed this semester, my forced delinquency compounded with my sister’s car being towed in Flower Mound has had my blood boiling and my mind churning. $298.30 was the ransom demanded of my family, and this is the fourth — yes, the fourth — time that someone has had their car towed while with me.

I soon plan to propose that properties change “towing enforced” signs to “beware of vultures.”

So, I did some research into what exactly is and can be charged for one’s car being towed. After speaking with multiple towing companies and reading over legislation passed by the state, I learned that private towing companies can charge, maximum, anywhere between $250 and $900 per tow, depending on the size of the vehicle. That is before any of the additional fees these companies are also allowed to pile on are applied (funny how similar this seems to an omnibus spending bill, but that’s for another opinion piece).

Now — to play devil’s advocate — towing companies are permitted to charge less than the maximum fees set by the state. I mean, how tyrannical would it be for the state to dictate exactly what the company must charge? For example, my friend, Zach and my girlfriend, Bethany have had their cars towed from my apartment complex, and they paid just under $200, which is significantly less than the maximum fee. But, overall, if a company is limited to a certain amount it can charge for a service (if you consider towing a service), it is likely it will err on the side of a more lucrative price.

I hope to make this very clear: there is no justifiable reason for breaking the rules, and, if one does break rules, he or she should absolutely expect to pay the consequences resulting from that choice. However, this does not absolve companies of moral culpability. I am making the case that — for all intents and purposes — the theft of one’s property does not fit the crime. These companies should be ashamed of themselves for grabbing their victims by the ankles and shaking them until the last nickel falls. Were they to slap a small fine on my car, like UNT does, rather than kidnap my property, I’d find respite from my anger.

Don’t mistake my intent. If you have read my article on the recent tax reform legislation, you know I have an incredibly pro-business leaning. I am not, however, in favor companies taking advantage of individuals by holding their property hostage and demanding far more than is necessary to get it back.

We’ve all seen how difficult parking has become. On the Square I am teased weekly by the wide-open pasture in front of Wells Fargo while I am now forced to fight to the death for a free parking space not 10 feet away.

UNT has stripped away leagues of parking, inviting collegiate parking lot sharks to roam for spots. I’m surprised I haven’t seen cars parked on the sidewalks surrounding campus.

To towing companies everywhere: it is morally egregious to charge what you do to get our own property back. Penalize us, yes. But don’t take the shelter provided to you by the state as means to run us dry. We have bills to pay, medical procedures to fund and food to buy. Your practices are hog wash.

I’m finding it difficult to even consider what towing companies do as a service. The exchange of goods is by no means of equal value. And whom exactly are towing companies serving? Do you think they’re doing well by the community?

Hog wash.

Featured Image: Illustration by Austin Banzon

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  1. J
    J March 29, 00:03

    If you “have bills to pay, medical procedures to fund and food to buy” then don’t break the rules knowing full well what the consequences are. It’s as simple as that. Giving a slap on the wrist isn’t enough to deter everyone. You’re not entitled to park on private property without subjecting to their policies.

    Reply to this comment
  2. RodVT
    RodVT March 29, 09:40

    Dude, you are complaining about the wrong entity. The towing company is working on behalf of the property owners. Your beef should be directed at them.

    Reply to this comment
  3. Kyresqtow
    Kyresqtow March 29, 10:27

    Nobody too advantage of anyone but you… you took advantage of a parking space you knew was off limits… as far as charging a decent rate… in,1960 the rate was $25… by inflation standards… today would be 209.63

    Reply to this comment
    • Ross
      Ross April 03, 10:28

      He wrote specifically that he knew he was breaking rules. His argument is that the punishment far exceeds the crime.
      As for your comment about the price in 1960…I’m not sure what that has to do with anything.

      Reply to this comment

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