Have We Traded Sane For Safe?

Protesting global warming
Protesting global warming

Chicken Little I am not.

Chionophobia- Fear of snow

I get nervous when people start calling for safety over sanity. Have you ever read the warning labels companies are forced to affix to a product? All that “research”, legal mumbo-jumbo and added paper costs you money. These are but a couple…

  • “Do not use if you cannot see clearly to read the information in the information booklet.” — In the information booklet.
  • “Caution: The contents of this bottle should not be fed to fish.” — On a bottle of shampoo for dogs.
  • “For external use only!” — On a curling iron.
  •  “Do not drive with sunshield in place.” — On a cardboard sunshield that keeps the sun off the dashboard.
  • Label (on website): Do not eat.
    Product: Apple’s iPod shuffle

We know of the frivolous lawsuits that cost companies millions. We know of the added expense not only to win, but to “protect.”

And now we have a “major” snowstorm about to descend on the New England area. (Are weather stations afraid of being sued? Aren’t they covered by “protected sources” laws? In any business other than the government healthcare web site the frequency of wrong predictions would bankrupt a business.)

Maybe I am naive but when I was young the idea of a “foot of snow” was not that big a deal. Long before we had lots of improved snow tires, lots of front wheel drive, 4WD and AWD vehicles and 24 hour convenience stores. (I get it. I was a kid.) But I can not remember one person ever saying “OMG…6-12″ of snow!”

(BTW-did you see it snowed in Cairo for the first time in 112 years? Please do not take your camel out if you do not have to.)

Do I really “like” to drive in the snow? Honestly to say I “like” it would be a stretch, but it does not bother me. I have driven hours and days in the snow to get somewhere. Only a last year ago we drove back from Ohio in snow (through lake effect snow.) for over 13 hours.

Fear is not the answer. Too many paint fear with a brush they like to call wisdom. Many of us drove to the bar in snowstorms. We would go anywhere for a date or a concert. But now we are “older and wiser”…

Maybe this seems like a rant and perhaps some of it is though not intended to be.

I understand children perhaps prefer snow more than adults. Adults look at preparation, increased costs and such. But, if you are just running down to Walmart now, seems like the wisdom part might have been ignored.

fearAm I being a little hard? Perhaps. But I am really tired of the spirit of fear that truly is being instilled in children. Be afraid of this, don’t go near this and WHATEVER you do BE CAREFUL and NEVER touch that! I am tired of fearmongering in media, schools and even a church or two.

When I was child I had a little metal tray outside my window. In that tray was salt. If it snowed (Or rained-not as good!) a doorbell that was wired to the connection would go off alerting me to precipitation-sometimes mixed precipitation! I would jump up, view the weather, get dressed and head out the door to shovel driveways and walks. (Later a snow blower did it.) And around the neighborhood I would go. Making money. Helping older folks in many cases.

When I was 9 I began delivering newspapers Monday through Friday, with man named Al Eliason. 2 hours-$2. Papers got deliver out of van no matter what the weather. (He also delivered dry cleaning. So, I did both, dropping boxes of starched shirts and plastic bags of jackets and dresses.) I also worked in a gas station pumping gas for a man named Frank after school and weekends. $1 per hour and .10 for every quart of oil sold. Papers got delivered and gas stations were open.

I get that not everyone is a great driver. I understand some are older and do not want to take risks. I appreciate that. I love driving in new snow with EMPTY roads. But let me suggest spreading fear is not a great idea. I am not asking you to take chances.

I get it. We have car seats. (When I was a child the “car seat” was the back window deck. We did not have seat belts.) We have better tires, safer cars (Though they all look the same!) and heat that works! (Do we remember Corvairs and VW bugs?)

I care about this upcoming generation. I am okay if they climb trees, shoot guns and drive in the snow! (When I was child only one child lost an eye-but it was not a BB gun. My friend Skippy was running back to his dad with an arrow in his hand… Did we do stupid stuff with Jarts?)  Not everything we did was safe. I know that! (I grew up on Superman, Batman and Evel Knievel.) But a lot of what we did was fun. We traded a lot of healthy endeavors for safety.

For we have not the spirit of fear.

It is a snow storm. (Or maybe not…)

The weather outside is frightful…

WWJFD-What would Jack Frost do?




Written by Lee Johndrow

Lee Johndrow

Lee is on staff as the Prophetic Ministry Leader at the Village Church where he functions as one of the prophetic grace. (You can visit their site at www.villagechurchswanzey.com)

He is the father of five wonderful children. Married for over 22 years to his wife Tina. 7 grandchildren as of September 22, 2014, with another one on the way! Loving life with family, friends, faith, fun and food!

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