There are many who believe that the term known as "jaywalking" or unlawfully crossing the street, was created because of the letter "J". What could this mean, and why would the letter "J" play a role?
Well, many claim it is due to the way we walked across the street without a crosswalk. Thinking the way we walked, from one side of the street to the other, looked more like the letter "J" instead of a straight line. Perhaps we do, but it is not what coined the term, "Jaywalking."
We derived jaywalking from the word "Jay", which was known as an insult when said during the early 1900s. Surprisingly, during the early years when the phrase jaywalker was used, it had little to do with pedestrians crossing the street. Instead, it was used to scold those who lacked sidewalk etiquette.
Interestingly enough, the term has stuck and remains within our vocabulary even to this day.
However, today jaywalking is associated with pedestrians illegally crossing the road because it is a safety hazard. It is important to always use crosswalks for your safety and for the safety of others.
Stay safe out there and watch out for those jaywalkers!
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