Saturday, July 24, 2010

Quick Hit: The "I Did It and I'm Fine" Rant

I don't know about you, but I get SO tired of the "I did it and I'm fine" argument. It comes up everywhere you turn and in many different forms.

There's the one we use for our kids: "Well my mom did this for me, and I turned out fine, so why shouldn't I do the same for my kids?"

Then there's the don't fix what ain't broken version: "I've always done it this way and it's never caused any harm."

I'm sure there are a million different variations and to list them all would take all day, but I'm sure you get the idea.

What brings me to think about this is an encounter that I had yesterday at the gas station. As I was walking through the parking lot, I saw a man smoking a cigarette who was about to start pumping gas. He showed no sign that he was going to put out his cigarette.

Typically speaking, I tend not to approach smokers in public about their smoking. As an ex-smoker, I know how defensive people can be, especially when they're in the great outdoors among all the fresh air. But this guy was potentially putting myself, my kids, and everyone else at that gas station in danger.

"Don't you think you should put that out?" I asked the guy.

"Nah. I do this all the time," he shrugged as he placed the nozzle in his car. "Never hurt anyone."

I was amazed. "Yeah? Well I've never overdosed on heroin, but you don't see me out here shooting up, now do you?"  I made my way back to my car, pumped my gas as quickly as I could and sped off, furious.

I just don't understand how people can advocate and condone dangerous behavior simply because it's never hurt them personally.

How about you? Does this piss you off as much as it does me? What instances have you run into? Did you respond to them? If so, how?