“Welcome to a new kind of tension, All across the alienation.”
-Green Day, “American Idiot”
America has proven that we’re a tense and intense nation. I’m not a psychologist, though I did minor in the subject in college which obviously certifies me as a professional despite my previous claim, but if I were to analyze the root of something as common as road rage then I would simply blame the sense of entitlement we have grown to believe we’ve earned. See, I can be just as vague as someone you pay $200/hr to analyze why you lashed out as a teenager when it was obviously rebellious angst most individuals go through during that phase of their life. Get over the fact that you couldn’t date the person you wanted to date and that your parents fought. Welcome to the club. I have a PayPal account if you would like to deposit this session’s fee; anytime will work.
Two recent road rage incidents have provided a dark cloud over the mental stability of American drivers. The first was an incident involving a motorcycle in Dallas. On October 17th, 2015, 68-year-old William Crum purposely (it’s a blog, I can make assumptions) ran a couple on a motorcycle off the asphalt as the rider tried to pass two vehicles on a two-lane road outside of Granbury, TX. Both riders were injured and Crum was arrested on two counts of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon (cars are bigger than guns). The motorcyclist, Eric Sanders suffered abrasions, and passenger Debra Simpson was moved out of the ICU and is considered to be in stable condition after deep lacerations on her arm as well as a broken wrist. Crum exclaimed that he “didn’t care” as witnesses approached him immediately after the incident, explaining that Sanders was trying to pass him on double-yellow lines. His story later changed saying a wasp or spider or some insect that probably would not be just chilling in a person’s lap while driving bit him. I believe he was just upset he was getting passed, and stubbornness is part of road rage. Everything is bigger in Texas, especially egos and lies.
He sure looks like someone who can be trusted. You’re more than welcome to find the video, it’s all over the interweb and if you’re reading this blog you probably have some time on your hands. The second occurrence happened yesterday, October 20th in Albuquerque, NM when a driver on I-40 opened fire on another vehicle for an incident moments earlier on the road, shooting and killing a four-year-old girl. APD Chief Gorden Eden said, “This is a complete disrespect of human life.” I don’t think anyone could put it any better. However, it’s disappointing that New Mexico banished the death penalty because whoever committed this heinous act deserves nothing more than to die. Some could probably put it a little better than that, but that doesn’t mean they’re not thinking the same thing. The suspect remains at-large because as of now not one person is stepping up and providing vital information regarding this case. If we’re going to sit here and believe that no one saw the confrontation on one of the busiest east-west interstates in the country then maybe there is reason to bring up the issue of gun control again, but not on the level the government is recently debating. Maybe it’s not the fact that stupid people are using guns, maybe just a majority of the country is stupid and can’t handle the responsibility of a deadly weapon. It’s our right to bear arms and I support our constitution, but our founding fathers didn’t take into consideration that we bear idiots as well.
The humorous yet serious essays in the book Driving: An Unofficial Guide (available on Amazon) will help you understand the psyche behind these losers on the road. You should buy it; just a suggestion so we don’t get too serious now.
We want power, but we can’t handle it. We have people in our country who hide within their state-of-the-art machines and feel indestructible, or they cower behind deadly weapons believing just carrying around a piece validates ultimate respect from everyone. It’s simply pathetic. Where do we get this sense of entitlement that we know the law better than the law, or feel that we are allowed to take matters into our own hands, or deserve respect based off image and our conception of common sense that is solely influenced by learned behavior in a small, yet unfortunately all-too-common, setting. You know who else thinks they know everything and believe they can decide what is right or wrong: those teenagers whose parents are paying Psychologists $200/hr to state the obvious. The only problem is that the uneducated who are taking matters into their own hands are humans who never developed properly. It’s not a road rage problem or a gun control problem; it’s a societal problem.