When I was younger, I had a hard time understanding why people who frequently visited McDonald’s or other fast food restaurants, grocery stores, gas stations, or even sit-down restaurants felt that they had to be so rude or mean in order to achieve a goal or to make a point with the employees of such places. I never understood why the lawyer in front of me in the grocery store line acted so professional around town, but yelled at the cashier when the price on one of his items appeared wrong on the screen. The lady yelling at her waitress in Tumbleweed always seemed ridiculous to me, and so did the people who were grumpy after waiting for their food for more than five minutes in fast food restaurants. Although I considered this behavior silly and immature, which is saying something since I was a child and those behaving in this manner were adults, I never fully understood how horrible it actually was until I myself became an employee of a grocery store.
During my two years of being employed at a SureWay, I went through some major verbal attacks. I can recall a time when I was yelled at and had many expletives thrown in my direction simply because I politely asked a female customer to remove her purse from the belt so that it could move and I could continue to ring up her groceries. As I continued to work at this grocery store, I continued to be yelled at. Because of this I learned why customers seemed so displeased from time to time. I learned that such unhappy customers felt justified in treating me, and other employees as well, in the manner they did because we were merely working at a grocery store for minimum wage and these customers thought that we would probably continue to work at this store instead of pursuing a college degree.
I now see and know how it feels to be on the employees’ end of this deal. It is never fun to be yelled at or belittled, or to feel like you are beneath someone. No one enjoys being put down, and I am sure that for all of those reading this you can think of a time when you felt put down, and I am equally sure that you were not fond of that feeling. All people contribute something to this world and our individual societies. We are all doing the best we can with what we have. We are all contributing in our own ways, and as a species that have the ability to be empathetic, we need to start using this ability and realize that we would not like to be treated the way we treat those who we deem as less valuable than ourselves. It is important to see the value, importance, and beauty in everything.
This is the belief I carry with me in all that I do: Everyone is valuable in their own unique way.
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