Community Voices

Guest Opinion: Rio Linda Elverta Moral Fiber

By Kris “McFunstigate” McCandless

Kris McFunstigate

If memory serves, there is only one shopping center in this community that has shopping carts, and it never fails that the parking lot is littered with the bright yellow carts parked everywhere they are not supposed to be. Oftentimes, just mere feet from the cart return.

If putting your cart back in the cart return is truly an indication of our community’s moral fiber, like the Shopping Cart Theory suggests, we are screwed. How can we ever hope to have self-governance over our own community as a whole if we can’t even govern our own selves?

And, before you go saying “but, it happens everywhere, not just here,” big fat “duh” to you. We can’t change “everywhere” without changing “somewhere.” So, let’s just focus here, shall we?

I know I’ve talked about this topic before, but it absolutely bears repeating: just because it is someone’s job to [collect carts], doesn’t mean that you should impose your laziness on someone else- your fellow humans have to deal with those carts damaging their vehicles,
blocking otherwise open spots, and whatever other possible consequence would come of it.

Be a good human and put your damned cart away.

If you are unfamiliar with The Shopping Cart Theory (attributed to Glenn Danzig, though I am unsure of the validity of it), here it is:

The shopping cart is the ultimate litmus test for whether a person is capable of self-governing.

To return the shopping cart is an easy, convenient task and one which we all recognize as the correct, appropriate thing to do. To return the shopping cart is objectively right. There are no situations other than dire emergencies in which a person is not able to return their cart. Simultaneously, it is not illegal to abandon your shopping cart. Therefore, the shopping cart presents itself as the apex example of whether a person will do what is right without being forced to do it. No one will punish you for not returning the shopping cart, no one will fine you or kill you for not returning the shopping cart, you gain nothing by returning the shopping cart. You must return the shopping cart out of the goodness of your own heart. You must return the shopping cart because it is the right thing to do.
Because it is correct.

A person who is unable to do this is no better than an animal, an absolute savage who can only be made to do what is right by threatening them with a law and the force that stands behind it.

The Shopping Cart is what determines whether a person is a good or bad member of society.

After hearing me talk about this Cart Challenge a couple of years ago, someone turned me on to Cart Narcs– a group of people going around calling people out for being “lazybones” and not returning their carts. I find them absolutely hilarious and I wish I had the cajones to do the same.

Here is one of my favorite episodes, enjoy.

Kris “McFunstigate” McCandless, the “Doer of things” is an owner of McCandless Construction, Inc., the Current Rio Linda Elverta Chamber of Commerce President, Vice-Chair of the RLE Community Planning Advisory Council, and the Former RL/E Honorary Mayor.
She is also President and Founder at the Rio Linda Elverta Community Theater, Vice President/Lecturer of the Rio Linda Grange #403 and Huckleberry at the Rio Linda Elverta Country Faire. She is the proud owner of a freshly minted Bachelor’s degree in Logic and Philosophy of Science, Pay-it-Forward Junkie, Instigator of fun, Thinker of thoughts, and Mom.