Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Thoughtful Tuesdays - when does it become your business...


“Life is moral responsibility. Life is several other things, we do not deny. It is beauty, it is joy, it is tragedy, it is comedy, it is psychical and physical pleasure, it is the interplay of a thousand rude or delicate motions and emotions, it is the grimmest and the merriest motley of phantasmagoria that could appeal to the gravest or the maddest brush ever put to palette; but it is steadily and sturdily and always moral responsibility.”
Elizabeth Stuart Phelps 

2 weeks ago, I took Reya to the her ice skating class which is located in a mall. As I parked the car, I saw a fashionably dressed women in her 30s sitting in the car next to me. As I was gathering my things I saw that lady drinking water from a plastic bottle and then throwing it outside her car window....

She threw the bottle just like that... no hesitation of littering the parking lot, no embarassment ... nothing... very casually! I am not sure why, but my blood just boiled...

I ran outside. The car had started and was backing in the parking to make a turn when I just stood in front of that car and waved to make it stop. I then ran and picked up the bottle while the lady opened her car glass to see what I was doing. I came back to her car and the following conversation ensued...

Me (giving her the bottle): You forgot your bottle...
The lady (without any shame): Oh I am done using it. I don't need it.
Me: Then throw it in the trash can.
The lady: I put it there.
Me:This parking lot is not a trash can.
The lady: You know it can be recycled...
Me: Then put it in a recycle bin... This is not a trash can
That lady: It can be recycled... do you recycle
Me again: Put it in a recycle bin... This is not a trash can
That lady: You can keep it... do you recycle...
...
...

At this point, I lost it... I said "Wait a sec" and took out my phone.
Me: Let me just take a picture of your license plate and then I will be glad to keep this bottle as an evidence while filing a complaint against you.

As I tried to take a picture, the lady ran away... a few minutes later as I was going back to my car, I again saw that lady driving by. This time there was an older african-american man with her. She slowed down, pointed towards me and said something to the man. Immediately, I took my phone and waved and she sped the car and ran again. This time I took a picture of the car driving away.


When I went back home and narrated this incident to my husband and mother, they both scolded me for being "Jhansi ki Rani" and that I could have been hurt if it had been a criminal type person. They suggested that I should just "mind my own business" and "ignore these things"...

"Mind my own business"..... "Ignore these things".... but isn't this exactly how these these things spread.... Any wrong action done by a few people becomes a widespread habit of society only because people mind their business and ignore things. In reality, if we stop ignoring and start taking matters in our hands, a lot of evils will be reduced...

Anything that affects the world and the society that I live in affects me... and it somehow, in a small way, becomes my businesss...

It should become your too!!!

Until next time,
Shilpa, Reya and Rithik

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