What’s happening to this country? There seems to be so much violence in the news lately where people get into fights and take the life of another; where people are angry and shoot a group of people in a theater and other places; where innocent children playing outside their homes are shot; where a parent takes the lives of their family members and then turns the gun on themselves. What’s happening to us? Why do we feel the need to hurt others?
On Friday, I was out biking and taking this long steep hill hoping that I would have the hill all to myself until I reached the top. From the top of the hill, a man in a big black pick-up truck with lawn mowers and lawn equipment attached to the back on a long bed, turned onto the street. The street is not a narrow one and is also two-way. The man in the black pick up truck refused to move over. I rode on the edge of the asphalt balancing myself between that and the gutter. When we passed, he yelled out the window to me to get out of the street. If I had not held my bike steady as we passed, I would have hit up against his truck. What would make a person do anything like that? Are people like that made of pure evil? Yesterday, Saturday, I decided to take another short ride this time and as I was leaving my development, a man decided to turn his beige SUV around as I approached. He had come down too far and needed to make a U-turn. He looked up and saw me and instead of waiting for me to pass, as most people ordinarily do, he decided to back up and start again and back up and start again in front of me. I shrugged as if to say, “Go ahead. Take your time,” and when he saw that, he started with a bunch of other signs that I guess he thought I understood, all the while, his car blocked the intersection. Then he tried pulling up a little and when he did, I started out of the street in back of his SUV. I was afraid to go in front of him. This very angry man would have taken my life, I’m sure of it.
So I ask again. What’s happening to this country? Why are people so angry? Both times, these were “men.” I have to put that in quotes because here was one man in a big black pick-up-type truck and I’m on a little bike; the other man in an SUV and I’m on a little bike. If you aim your car at someone, as the man in the pick up truck did, does that make it attempted murder? I’ll bet this man’s mother or wife (really? a wife?) would say that he is a “good person.” But good people don’t have evil thoughts and that man’s thought was to run me down, teach me a lesson.
I think that the question: “What’s happening in this country?” needs answering. What are we doing that is causing people to be so angry and violence oriented? Should we have more restrictions? We certainly need more gun control laws. Even if you are pro guns, you’ve got to see that we need more laws about who can buy a gun and how. We may even need to raise the price of guns, but that just may cause other problems. I think one thing that makes people angry where I live is the number of condos and apartments going up in the area making an already over crowded area, more congested. This is certainly frustrating to me. But I would never aim my car at anyone and try to run them down, either.
I must say that over the years, and I’ve been riding for about fifteen years, most people are thoughtful and kind. I make it a habit of following all the laws when I ride the streets. I stop at stop lights, and signs, and take my turn at stop signs. When people allow me to go first, I give a wave of “thank you,” and a smile or I say it aloud when I’m not able to take my hands off the handle bars. When I smile at people they smile back and this kind of thing makes me feel good about people. It helps me see that not all people have an evil heart. After this week, I really need to hold on to all those who waited on me, were patient with me, smiled back at me and who were overall kind and thoughtful people. And after fifteen years of biking in the area, I can tell you for certain that people are basically kind-hearted.
But there is something happening that is causing people to be angry, that’s causing people who were good-hearted to turn with angry hearts and aim their cars and trucks at people with the intent to take a life.