In the good, old days, as we sometimes refer to our youth, our innocence as human beings kept us from thinking that we had to make the right decisions all the time to survive. We later found that we do survive our mistakes, in most cases, but that some of our decisions end up costng us more than others. The same is true when we make good decisions; those that seem to profit or better us in some way. As we got older we slowly lost the complete view of the effects of all of those decisions and suddenly we are at a crossroad. It is here that we need to take measure of where we have been and where we are going. After all, no one else is going to do that for us. No matter what we may think of ourselves, we will lose sight of what we are and who we are if we let others do this for us. Human nature is like no other of life; we get second and third chances but we eventually have to deal with consequences. But do we think rationally anymore?
Every day we see people around us making choices. Some are obviously simple and others are much more complcated. Some people tend to avoid choosing, and for as long as possible, especially when the decision has dire consequences. Others do not shun away from them, but they may rush through the process of making them. If you think about it, though, a choice cannot be forever avoided. If we wait long enough, someone might make it for us, and may times we may not be happy with the outcome. How many of us really look at the picture and understand this?
Using or driving a vehicle in America today is thought to be a lawful right. We get in our cars (or other type of vehicle) and we turn the key and start up the engine with no idea what this individual trip will bring us. We put the transmission in gear and we go to where it is we wish to go. Along the way we pass or see many more people doing pretty much the same. However, we may not see the danger we face as we move along our personally tepid pace. Some of us drive at unsafe speeds, both very fast and sometimes very slow. Some of us make moves on the road that any one watching off the road would consider dangerous. Some of us pay no attention to the driving part;; we immerse ourselves inside a world of oblivion with such things as talking on a phone or eating and drinking our meal while still others are putting the last touches of beauty onto their faces. Not for one minute, until it happens, do we think that our DECISIONS to do these things will result in something harmfully bad. It cannot happen to us, we think. Even if something does happen that is bad, we do not think our actions were the cause, and then the individuals who may be affected by our lack of thought may not be around to voice their concern at what we have done. Perhaps WE may not even be around to ponder this. We or someone else will say “Too bad” and let it ride at that. If you have ever seen what a huge chunk of metal can do to a substance like flesh you understand the dangers we face when not considering the consequences and results of our lack of foresight. Speed kills someone once said to me, and it does not discriminate from one person to another. We will then blame someone else, perhaps even the vehicle’s manufacturer, for the results, but the truth is, that manufacturer did not drive the car or SUV for us. They would have to make our vehicles into military tanks or personnel carriers to make us safe enough from some of the dangerous acts we commit on the roads today. The fact there are more drivers today than ever before makes it even more dangerous not to THINK through such minor choices such as how fast to drive in traffic and whether our car can hold the bend in adverse weather conditions. It is OUR choice, and our choice only which will make or break human flesh eventually.
Did you ever wonder how many people around you enjoy listening to your full-length conversation on your cell phone in public? Is there some reasoning here that may suggest that most of the conversations on the phone are private and not public domain? And yet many cell phone users will hold entire conversations on their cell or portable phone systems in the presence of, and in a listening volume of, complete crowds of strangers without ever thinking about who is listening and why they might want you to talk somewhere else, or at least in a much quieter voice. I once heard a young woman talking about her personal record with a dating service in line at a grocery store, and right between us was a family with young children being forced to listen to the details, and yes, they were details that would make many people redfaced. Some of you wold say it is your right to talk whenever you would like and wherever you would like, but think about it for once. Are we so self-centered and self-absorbed to think that every one around us is without those same rights of privacy and consideration to think that there is a time and place to talk on the phone? What about the young children? Have we gone so far as to say, ” to hell with everyone else” when we should consider the effects we have on others? It is sad if we have gotten this far. We then can see why we have so many issues about society today.
My hope is to get people to consider the costs again. We have many decisions to make and they are on a daily basis. We do not have to be part of the cause of the failure of society to enjoy life. The one thing that makes human beings different from all the rest of the species we know of is that we can reason.. We can reason about anything, and we can make choices dependent on options and effects. Other species of life make decisions because their instinct to survive to live another day is what drives them. We have much more than that. Our decisions affect all others, whether directly or indirectly. We do not have to go on without rationality of a reasonable kind. We can also influence others with good and bad decision-making. I hope to maybe, just maybe, touch some of you with this line of thought. I would like to discuss things such as politics, religion, sports, business, wealth and success, and even the everyday world around us. It is my belief that we need to start considering the effects of the self-destructiveness cursing our lives today, and that our children are watching, and sadly to say, are learning. Pessimism breeds pessimism, and optimism breeds optimism, but it seems much more likely that our negative views about a lot of things is the more prevalent. Let’s change that before it is too late.