Our El Paso Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) is conducting a survey “about how you travel about the city”. I got one in my mailbox the other day.
They evidently did not feel that anyone in El Paso could handle the job so they hired the Texas A&M Transportation Institute. A&M in turn hired the ETC Institute out of Olathe, Kansas. So much for buying local.
The accompanying letter says “We need your ideas. We need your opinions”. The survey is multiple choice and nowhere is there so much as a blank spot where you can share an idea or opinion. It seems that they have made up their minds about what we need and the questions are probably designed to prove their point.
The letter goes on to say “Your participation is voluntary and your responses will remain anonymous”. More on that later.
The second question asks: “What are the names of the two cross streets closest to your home?”. Being an anonymous survey this should give the researchers an indication of where you live and you the impression that they really don’t know who you are. They ask questions about your commuting habits, bicycling, and walking. Questions about important things like the condition of our streets did not make the cut. This survey was designed to support an agenda that they already have.
They also ask about your health, physical condition, and exercise habits.
Then they get personal. The want to know your gender, age, weight, height, ethnicity, relationship status, social media usage, and number of vehicles you have. Let’s not forget that they also ask about your personal income.
They even ask “How happy, satisfied, or pleased have you been with your personal life?”.
Some of us might feel that it would be safe to answer those questions since our responses are anonymous.
At the bottom of the survey they have printed both your residence address and a serial number.
Anonymous my foot!
Are these people idiots or do they think that we are?
We deserve better