Bags at the Front … ? Perhaps, Discernment and Appreciation …

You want people in your shop
so that you can take their money,
and make a profit …

but you are not willing to treat them
with the common decency of NOT presuming
that they are thieves.

At the time of this writing,
I have managed over 55 years in this world
without stealing a single thing in my life.

which means that it is impossible for me
– as an honest and honourable man –
to even imagine the type of self-centred presumption
and contempt for human beings

as so evidently exists in shop-owners
and store managers who display,
at the entrance to their establishments,
signs demanding that potential customers

“leave all bags at the front”.

I understand that the generality
of the human race has deteriorated
in morals and basic manners to such a degree
over the past thirty years,
that multitudes

cannot communicate without filthy profanity
or to ‘go out of their way’ to exercise
basic, common courtesy –

for pity’s sake, modern men
do not even have the decency
to remove their hats when seated at a table
for a meal.

Human beings may have collectively descended
to below the level of animals, BUT that – ( surely ? )
does not give you license to abandon discernment
and the application of discretion,

and presume that EVERY Customer
who enters your shop
is a thief …

deserving of having their character
degraded by you ?

Of course, you do not remove the (often large)
‘handbags’ of women.

Or bar THEM from entering your premises —

You wouldn’t dare.

A woman carrying a bag … is a Customer.
A man carrying a bag … is a Thief.

In a ‘New World’ of mindless compliance,
I realise that multitudes will see nothing wrong at all
in being presumed a thief,

and therefore, are happy to leave
their personal possessions
at the front of your shop …

But there are a few of us – “old folks” –
still walking this earth,
who have lived lives of courtesy
and consideration towards other people;

who were raised with moral integrity
and “old fashioned”, (dare-I-say?) ‘biblical’ values
of conduct and self control.

Honourable people still exist.

They might even walk through the door
of an establishment such as yours.

I have observed – since the mid-1980’s in particular,
the eradication of manners and moral decency
in this world;

and have watched selfishness, vanity,
and crude speech and behaviour
rise to levels that are nothing less than obscene.

It may well be that I am the only person walking this earth
who will NOT sell his character
for the sake of buying and acquiring some … thing.

There is nothing in your shop important enough
for me to submit
to you degrading my moral character.

I would not give my bag to a thug
with a gun.

Nor am I going to hand it to a thug
with a cash register.

The atrocity, I suppose, is not so much
having the callous contempt of a bully:
but in being so bereft of a conscience
as to feel no shame because of it.

This is an age when corporate supermarkets
hire less staff and demand that customers
scan and pack their own groceries
… in bags that they have to provide themselves.

All to … ‘Save the Earth’ … of course.

But such brazen disregard for customer service
need not be a hallmark of your shop, surely ?

By all means, “reserve the right” to inspect
the bags of someone whom you have
just cause to believe has stolen merchandise,
without the wholesale degradation
of every adult that walks into your shop.

Whilst they are increasingly a rarity
amongst modern humanity, a Mature Adult
Thinks … with Discernment
and a Moral Conscience.

How would it be then, shop-keeper,
if you began to display appreciation
for those who seek to spend their money
in your shop …

Rather than arrogantly presume
that everyone who walks through your door

is a thief ?

P Livingstone
philiplivingstone.org

Author: Mr Livingstone

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