Courtesy Is Dead

To the jerk who left his paper plate on the floor of the N train the other day: The subway is not your personal trash can. The MTA provides you with real trash cans. Use them.

Which brings me to the title of this piece: Courtesy is dead. Why, do you ask? Because it seems to me that people just don’t think about being good to anyone else anymore. Let’s use the subway as an example here. Littering isn’t the only problem, even though it is a biggie, and not just in the subway, but everywhere. You have your door-hangers, and I’m not going to knock them too much because it’s a simple matter to push past them into the rest of the car.

But then you have the people just inside who push past the door-hangers… and then don’t move another inch. Meanwhile, the entire center of the subway car has only three or four people standing there, but everyone crowds into that small space between the doors because a few people don’t want to move in. Is it really that hard to take a couple extra steps so that people don’t have to stand crushed in so tiny a space? Do you seriously think that you won’t be able to get off the train? (You will.)

And you also have the assholes who play their music really loudly from their iPods. I don’t need to hear any of that. It’s really annoying when I’m trying to have a relatively quiet commute. (Don’t blame Apple when you can’t hear in the future, either.)You also don’t see seats being given to the elderly too often anymore. They’re the ones who need it most, and they’re the ones who will get hurt the worst if the train stops suddenly. There are the people who push onto the train before everyone alighting the train has gotten off. The train isn’t going anywhere. Wait your turn.

Today’s society is too concerned with “me, me, me.” But really, how is it different from before? Look at a lot of businesses around the turn of the 20th century. They would squeeze as much work as possible from their poor workers for as little pay as possible. Same self-centered attitude. But would it really hurt to take your fellow man into consideration once in a while? Slow down, and have some consideration. You might feel better for it.


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