I really don’t understand why people think rules never apply to them. When we drive on the interstate and we see a sign that says Right Lane Closed, it never fails that we see a car zooming past us on the right lane right before it ends. I can’t tell you how many times I have stood in line at places only to have some people think they can cut in front of me as if their time is more valuable than mine. When we were at the Grand Canyon, it amazed me to see people walk out o the very edge and sit so they could hang their legs over the side of the cliff. It didn’t matter to them that there were signs warning them not to do that. I have started taking photos of these people for my “collection” of Rules Don’t Apply. The latest one was taken at a waterfall where I know people have died from falling over the edge because of recklessness. There is a huge sign that says Danger and explains why. I was not even shocked when this couple decided to climb over the low fence by the sign so they could stand on the edge to take a better photograph. I took a photo of them so in case they fell, I could at least identify what they were wearing!
I always wonder where these people learned that rules don’t apply to them. Why do they think they don’t have to follow them? If they are parents, what kind of example are they setting for their children? It is no wonder that many of my students think they don’t have to follow the rules.
I think it would be a great lesson to use these photos from my collection and talk about this. We need to talk about what rule is being broken. We talk about why we think the person broke the rule and if we think that was a good enough reason to do this. We also talk about the consequences of breaking the rules as well as who else might be effected by the rule breaker’s actions. I believe it is time to start having major discussions about this since students are seeing so many of their role models breaking rules and getting away with it. It really reinforces their wrong thinking when they see local people in their real lives breaking rules without any thought.
I’m tired of being silent about this or just ranting about it in a blog or whining about it to my friends. I need to do something about this. Teaching a lesson and using real life examples will be more effective than the whining and ranting.
What other rules have you seen people break and think nothing about it? Please share.
Original Photo by Pat Hensley