I've spent a large amount of my life thinking back on past times, both long ago and "recently", meaning ~1950s to me.
A lot of things make sense, but some things just fundamentally baffle me. One of those things is the seemingly total disregard for safety when driving cars.
People were not idiots a few decades ago. Well, at least not the ones who invented and manufactured large machines such as cars. They must have very quickly, long before the 1950s, had tons of evidence of people dying in traffic accidents, or getting seriously hurt. How did it not occur to them to have some kind of belt or any other safety measure?
It's not like the safety belt wasn't invented, and used in various military contexts. And even if that weren't the case, it's a very obvious invention. We aren't talking about hi-tech sensors and air bags all around the passengers and refined safety measures like that -- we're talking about a basic belt around the humans so that they don't come flying through the window and become a pulp of blood and guts.
And those seats, leaving the whole head part "free", seems just silly as well. Who felt safe driving like that? Even at a low speed, you can feel it in your neck when there is an unexpected stop and there is nothing supporting your back of the head. These two things seem like they would've been implemented at the latest months after the modern car was invented in what I assume must've been around 1900 -- long before the 1950s when they (well, some) seemingly started to even consider human lives and health in the making of cars.
I can understand if they didn't bothered with seat belts in a wagon powered by one or two horses, but even then, they probably had some kind of handle or something to grab on to. When you introduce powerful engines, well, it just seems to go without saying that you would have to think about the consequences.
Is it possible that I'm somehow over-estimating the amount and seriousness of car crashes and traffic accidents in general? Did people really not care whatsoever about whether they were alive or dead or in a hospital for the rest of their lives, as long as they got to drive a car without any safety measures whatsoever? I don't understand this mentality, and I'm having a hard time understanding it.
Again, many other things can usually be explained in a satisfactory way, but this especially just doesn't make sense to me.