As I am not a fan of television and do not have cable in my house, I do subscribe to Netflix to watch a movie every now again. In fact, most of my viewing selections from Netflix since I subscribed to the service have been documentaries (the documentaries alone are worth the $7.99 per month). Last night I watched a documentary by filmmaker Doug Pray chronicling life on the road with America’s long-haul truck drivers.
I have always been fascinated by vehicles such as trucks, buses, and airplanes and the men and women who operate them. As a child and teenager I built models of trucks, cars and planes and even when asked what I wanted to be when I grew up, I would respond that I wanted to be a Greyhound bus driver. When I would give this response I had no clue or idea concerning the difference between a “blue collar” and “white collar” worker. I had no idea as a child how people would choose to respect or disrespect you based on what career or occupation you chose.
I’m sure by now you are wondering why I am sharing all of this with you as a result of watching a documentary called BIG RIG last night. Good question and I will help you connect the dots and point you to where I am going with this post. While watching the film, there was a resounding commentary that each trucker expressed and it had to do with how he or she was routinely looked down upon or disrespected because of he or she being a truck driver. At one point in the film, one of the truckers actually said he just wished that people understood that he was a human being too. That’s a sad statement. In the beginning of the film, one of the drivers was asked what would happen if the drivers all came together and decided not to drive? His response was “The country would shut down in a week.” His colleague chimed in and said that it would not take a week, but as little as three days. If you think about it, he was right; which brings me to my point. There is no such thing as a menial or unimportant job. Every job is critical to the overall success of us all. Why do you think the sanitation workers always conduct their strikes at the hottest point of the summer?
Critically think about this…imagine if all of the people who perform the jobs that those of us with the high and mighty titles think we are too good to perform, stopped doing their jobs. You know…. the jobs that folks with fancy and executive titles look their nose down upon. The folks who feel that you are “Just a……..” so you don’t really matter. Let me help you. Custodians, sanitation workers, security guards, secretaries, truck drivers, bus drivers, instructional assistant, teacher’s aide, nurse’s aide, lunch monitor, receptionist, and on and on and on with the jobs that we label as “blue collar” compared with what we consider a “respectable” job. How dare we look our nose down upon anyone? I say again, let any of the people who perform the jobs that I named and many more decide in mass that they will not do their jobs. Watch the havoc and chaos that would occur. A prime example is the referees who went on strike in the NFL. For the most part, no one pays much attention to the referees in a football game, yet when the professional referees were on strike and the replacement referees were assigned to the games, a difference was felt. The difference that was felt in the NFL is nothing compared to what the country would feel if our truck drivers stopped driving. There is not one product that you touch that has not been in a truck. Not one product that has not been transported by some truck driver before it reached you. So the next time you are tempted to look down your nose at someone because of what he or she does, you really need to think again. Every job and service is connected to the overall good. There is no such thing as a menial or unimportant job. Something to critically think about. I invite you to share your thoughts in the comment section of the blog and I also invite you to follow me on Twitter @thinkcritical01.