As often stated in this column, we often cannot control the events that confront us, but we virtually always can control our responses to them. So this brings me to something I would often relate to people on the few occasions when I was presiding as a judge in Traffic Court. We all know that sometimes when other drivers cut us off, or are otherwise rude in their driving behavior, some of us (mostly males) respond by glaring or gesturing at the offender or, worse yet, trying to cut him off in return. And often the initial recipient of the bad behavior would be the one who received the traffic citation. So what did I say in court on those occasions? What if you knew that the driver who cut you off was under the influence of methamphetamine? Always the answer came that we would hold back and let that person have his way (almost but not always it was a male). Just leave me alone!
So my advice to that person and everyone else in my courtroom was to treat all drivers who are involved in aggressive and rude behavior when behind the wheel as if they were on meth. (And frequently you will probably be right!) In fact, I myself have followed my own advice on several occasions after having the (mostly male) impulse to respond more aggressively. And maybe that has saved me from harm. So I believe these are words to live by. If you agree, pass them on.
Father, Retired Judge, 2012 Libertarian VP candidate, Author.