I was driving through the NAU campus this afternoon and at many of the intersections where there currently are no traffic lights they’ll have a person wearing a fluorescent POLICE vest directing traffic during particularly busy times of the day. I approached the intersection of San Francisco and Franklin, the guy in the bright fluorescent vest was gesturing for cars to keep going. There was a young woman standing on one of the corners on the sidewalk and yelled at the guy directing traffic. She said “Hey! When are you going to let me go?!” He said “In a minute, hold on.” She continued to yell “I’ve been waiting here for a long time! I’m [censored] going to be late for class damnit!” and made an exasperated loud exhale noise.

I was floored. The blatant rudeness and self-centeredness it would take to work up the nerve to act like that was mildly disturbing. Is the disconnect we experience from human emotion and empathy while hiding behind our computers, tablets and smartphones creeping into real life? More often the behavior that has in the recent past been exclusive to Internet anonymity has found its way into in-person interaction and it’s disheartening to say the least. If everyone could practice empathy, the world would thank you for it.

CAROLINE MCDONALD

Flagstaff

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