Opinion: An emotional rescue
As the discussion about public transportation continues in our fair communities, we are encouraged to think about our own habits and how we might make individual use of such amenities were they to become available. Would we ride busses? Would we ride trains? Would we ride monorails or planes? Kidding aside, the idea of having someone else do the driving can be very appealing. In some places around this planet, our fellow humans move collectively about quickly, affordably and in high comfort.
Yet, for reasons that we don’t fully understand, our desire to be entirely independent and unrestricted stymies our support for what, in many ways, would be a superior approach to personal locomotion. For many, air travel is the form of mass-transit most prevalent – there is little or no other service that corresponds with our homes or offices. It is an amazing feat that one can be transported in a few hours from one place to another safely and with minimal effort. Still, it requires that we get out of our individual automobiles and share our space with strangers.
And for many, this is a challenge – the release of control can be surprisingly emotional. But why is it so difficult? Most of us don’t know how to fly a jumbo jet and reason proves that the risk of peril in driving ourselves across country is far greater to our life and limb. Long lines, fights for overhead bin space, and cancelled flights are often blamed. But empirically compared to the alternatives, is our rational decision-making clouded by an overwhelming desire to maintain perceived control?
So how does a reasonable thinker seek balance in the discourse? Can we find our way to release some control to gain many other advantages? And even if we can, will we? Is there an emotional rescue?