|"Do you really want to hurt me? Do you really want to make me cry?|
Let me give you a quick synopsis...
A college student was interested in finding new ways to help box turtles safely cross the road, a dangerous and arduous journey that many of them are forced to make numerous times in their life. It seems that “death by vehicle” is the number one cause of box turtle mortality and the slow decline of their population is due to vehicular accidents.
Now, I don’t support creating special “passages” for the common box turtle. I’m not THAT environmentally friendly and I usually chalk up roadkill events to nothing more than “survival of the fittest”, but what the study actually proved, however, blew my mind.
The story’s lead sums it up, “Clemson University student Nathan Weaver set out to determine how to help turtles cross the road. He ended up getting a glimpse into the dark souls of some humans.”
Its not really clear WHAT Mr. Weaver was trying to figure out when he placed a realistic-looking plastic box turtle on the edge of a busy street and then observed how drivers would react to the little guy, but what he proved was that people are seriously fucked up!
During his first hour of observation, Weaver watched as 7 drivers DELIBERATELY ran over the small animal and several others TRIED to run him over, but failed.
Maybe this was an anomaly?
He tried his experiment on a quiet residential street and found that 1 in 50 drivers tried to intentionally kill the box turtle with their vehicle.
1 in 50!
This can’t be right. Right?
In the story, Western Carolina University psychology professor Hal Herzog explains that, sometimes, humans feel a need to prove they are the dominant species on this planet by taking a two-ton metal vehicle and squishing a defenseless creature under the tires.
He is quoted as saying, “They aren't thinking, really. It is not something people think about. It just seems fun at the time. It is the dark side of human nature.”
In fact, the piece reports that Professor Herzog polled his class and found that 34 of his 110 students had “intentionally run over a turtle, or been in a car with someone who did.”
As far as I’m concerned, this is just one rung on the psychopathic ladder, not far below the act of torturing small animals for fun and, frankly, it makes me ashamed of the human race.
It doesn’t surprise me though.
The more I think about what kind of person would do such a sick and twisted thing for absolutely no reason, the more I realize that there are two types of people in this world... There are those who are ruled by their ego and their quest for power, control and dominance... and there are those who carry some sort of moral compass which leads them to do what they believe is right.
Perhaps I am over-simplifying it... I mean, there are so many grey areas, and I am certainly no saint. Often, people become so obsessed with power that they lose their moral compass... but, still, I know WAY too many people who will “squash” the “box turtle” for no other reason but because they can.
By “squash” I mean, lie about, harass, abuse and threaten.
By “box turtle” I mean those of us who have tried, repeatedly, to do the right thing.
Recently, I was the box turtle, and those ruled by their lust for power and control finally swerved their car just right.
Unlike the box turtle, however, it didn’t kill me... but I may have misplaced my moral compass. and payback is a motherfucking bitch!