Just As I Thought

The State of California has determined that I am a freak

I can already tell that political leanings are a relative matter.
Here in California, I’m certain to be branded as a right-winger. I’m pretty astonished at the way people here seem to have only a casual relationship with “personal responsibility.”
For example, everywhere one goes, one sees signs and placards warning that “The state of California has determined” that there are dire consequences from chemicals. Outside restaurants, they warn you of undercooked food. Outside bars, there are warnings about cigarette smoke. Swimming pools warn of chlorine and dry cleaners warn of chemicals. Do they think that people are going to step into a dry cleaner and ask for a cleaning solution latte?
Grocery stores charge extra for bottles to fund recycling programs. It seems to me that if recycling can’t manage to pay for itself, it’s not being done right.
There’s another strange phenomenon here: cars stop for pedestrians. I find myself torn over this, again from a personal responsibility angle. In a civilized society, I believe that everyone should be courteous and careful around others; but it’s been taken so far here. People walk out in front of cars without looking, secure in the knowledge that the cars will stop — whether they have the right of way or not. They cross in the middle of streets and wander through parking lots, heedless of what is going on around them.
I tend to look both ways and not cross until it’s clear. And this is confusing to drivers here. I stand on the curb and refuse to walk out into the street when a car is coming, leaving drivers to wonder what my problem is.
The problem is that I take responsibility for myself rather than rely on a paternalistic government. Weird.

2 comments

  • Hmmm. This sounds as if it could have been written by John Stossel! : ) Is that you John? What have you done to Gene?

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