Another evening in Manhattan, meaning more cars going by without mufflers, or with mufflers modified to make a lot of noise.
I remember the trend beginning during the pandemic: I guess people modified their mufflers to make random BANG! BANG! noises. I think the trend started or expanded during the pandemic because police stopped enforcing so many laws then.
Why unmuffle cars?
I doubt they change the car’s performance. I think they people doing it would say they do it to make their cars and motorcycles sound like race cars. Just a guess, but I think they do it to show status—that is, to exert dominance by showing they can act with impunity. But why something that bothers people? Why not do something that contributes to society or at least doesn’t detract?
Just a guess at the connection again, but young men used to compete at sports for status. For thousands of years, probably hundreds of thousands, they wrestled and ran races. Now they’re sedentary. We make them sit in rows with no outlet to compete. We take away recess. We make doof available to them all the time.
The result: many (most?) boys and young men or too sedentary, unpracticed, and possibly obese to compete effectively. They don’t know what to do.
But their evolutionary wiring still tells them to compete and establish dominance. So they make their cars loud.
Noise pollution is still pollution, as is regular pollution. These trends aren’t improving lives.
What do you think of my theory for the growth of unmuffled cars?
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