Jason's Blog

*sigh* Some people…

by on Mar.12, 2004, under General

Ok, I have to ask, what kind of moron parks in someone else’s driveway, BEHIND someone else’s vehicle, blocking them from leaving? On a work day? Do people think, or is there too much alcohol in the blood to make rational thought possible?

As part of this, I had to have them towed, so I could actually get out. I hate doing that, and I feel pretty guilty about doing so. I keep wondering if there was something else I could have done, but I needed my vehicle. It’s one of those too, if I don’t do it, and let it slide, isn’t there the possibility that this person will do it again? Will they perhaps learn from this mistake if they actually have to pay for it? Further, there’s the whole thing of what would Jesus do in such a situation? Course, Jesus wouldn’t have had a car, and probably would have just made this guys’ car vanish and reappear someplace else or something like that, but it’s just one of those things I have to ask myself – did I do the right thing?

It’s one of those things that the only thing I can come up with is that you have to be responsible for your own actions. This responsibility means that when something happens, you deal with it. If I’m blocked in, the only real alternative I had was catch a ride, which is a major inconvenience. This person’s responsibility was to not park in someone else’s driveway, blocking them in.

As a general rule, I believe that if you make a mistake, fix it that mistake, no matter what the cost to yourself, no matter how difficult. And this applies to everyone, or, in my view that this rule should apply to everyone. You fix your own mistakes. More, don’t blame someone else if it’s your problem. This seems so much like a responsibility issue to me, and I hope it doesn’t become a problem, or that this person doesn’t be a jerk about it, because it is in the end their fault. I did what I felt I had to do. *sigh* Just hate it when stuff like this happens, when I have to do soemthing I don’t like doing.


6 Comments for this entry

  • tanya

    umm…did you try knocking on your neighbor’s door?

  • tonya

    Jason, I think you think too much.  If you keep this up, your head’s gonna pop off!

  • Daniel Poth

    Jason,

    I’d talk about this over IM with you, but you’re not online, so I’ll use this. What you did was wrong. It was extreme and it was spiteful. People experiencing guilt don’t giggle when they inflict punishment on others as you did this morning. You were gleeful. To deny that is to deny what I saw this morning. To answer your question, Jesus would have done what Jesus said he would do. He would turn the other cheek when his face was hit. You had your face hit and proceeded to pull out a shotgun and shoot the other guy at close range.

    You may have been justified in having the car towed. He was on our property and I acknowledge this. But having the right to do something does not necessarily equal doing that thing. You punished this person because he offended your sense of responsibility. You have that right to, but you were wrong. The actions that you took were so radically unproportional to the crime that they cannot be justified.

    Consider for a moment alternatives to your version of what happened. Perhaps the person was stumbling drunk, but I doubt that. At no point last night or this morning did we hear the door try to open. That would seem to indicate that the person parked in our driveway knowing that it was not his house. This leaves open other possibilities. A) He went to our next door neighbor’s house. As the driveway technically belongs to him, you might have had a car towed that had a right to be there. (Check the lease, there’s nothing about our ownership of the driveway) In that case, you committed a wrong act. B) The person felt that there was enough of a state of emergency that he felt compelled to take the nearest parking space available to get there quickly. In that case, he was wrong to park in our driveway, but the mitigating circumstances are such that it is forgivable. C) He parked there out of laziness and slept in. This is the weekest leg for him to stand on as he was wrong to do so. He had no justification. I still believe that for a simple mistake, the response was far too extreme and patently un-Christlike.

    I agree with your assertion that personal responsibility is important in society, but so is mercy. They act in concert. Personal responsibility without the tempering force of mercy leads to harshness and righteous attitudes. In short, while it is socially justfiable, it is not a way to order healthy society. The expectation of perfection is not realistic. To appeal to a cliche “People fuck up.” In light of this less than pleasing reality, you must make a choice. Do you choose to embrace mercy or do you choose to embrace harshness of action. The two are mutually exclusive.

    Finally, I must say that mercy does not exclude punishment. Punishment is an integral part of social living. Mercy is simply the effort on the part of the wronged to temper justice with love. The person who parked there deserved to know that they did wrong. Having a person’s car towed at great expense to them for a minor mistake on their part is not merciful. It is vengeful and spiteful and without proportionality. It is the equivalent of cutting off a person’s hand for stealing fruit. For the mistake, the person will now have to deal with the panic of having his car go missing, the police runaround, endless forms, large amounts of money to get the car out of the impound, missed classes, and an associated magnitude of stress during what, for students, is the single most stressful part of the semester, midterms week. He might even miss a midterm given that he may have parked there to study for one, a very plausible possiblity.

    You missed some work, Beth missed her class, and you could have easily, very very easily, caught a ride with me at very little personal cost. I would have been happy to do it. What you did was wrong at it harmed everyone involved. I apologize if this is harsh, but the image of you giggling at having this person’s car towed has been eating at me.

  • Jason McIntosh

    Problem is I know all my neighbors.  *sigh* None of them knew who it was either.  And it had the oh so fun greek organization sticker on the back, stuff like that.  Usually means someone out partying, drunk, etc.

  • Jason McIntosh

    Ok, “giggling” wasn’t at all related to “glee” to having this person’s car towed.  It’s called a screwed up situation, and instead of getting upset, irritated, etc.  I just laughed at it.  That’s it.  Spite has nothing to do with it either, and it’s wrong to assume that I did this out of spite, hate or any other related emotion. 

    Second, with regards to Jesus, yes, he would have walked away, but I’m not Jesus, and I did what I felt I had to do.  I had the car removed from my driveway.  It was NOT my fault moron parked his car in my driveway, and I had very little other choice. Yes, getting a ride is an option, but NOT a good option, in my view, as it leaves me without a vehicle, leaves someone else getting away with shit that’s just stupid and wrong.

    As for should or should not, he should not have parked in our driveway, definitely.  Should I have had him towed?  What other options did I have to have his vehicle moved?  Knock on a neighbor’s door and randomly wake up our whole neighborhood?  Why didn’t they do that when they parked in our driveway? 

    Last, as for mercy, yes, I believe in mercy, but I also believe strongly in justice.  I waited for an hour before calling a tow truck.  I looked around, I tried to see if the car was even warm, i.e. someone who had left it there for a while.  NOTHING.  No note, not a sign, nothing.

    And last, as for personal cost, I choose to have my vehicle, myself. This is related to my views on being independent, self-reliant, etc.  Without a vehicle, it’s a MUCH bigger pain to do nearly anything that I like to do, i.e. go to work, eat lunch, get home, etc. without having to ask for rides.  I like my personal independence.

    In the end, I still think it was the right choice.  I don’t like the choice, I don’t like doing what I did, but I don’t feel I really had a decent alternative that would have left me feeling comfortable.

  • Jason McIntosh

    Oh, one last note.  There’s a nice big empty parking lot, right down the street.  It’s NOT that hard to walk.

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