*Opinion* The Socio-Breakdown Of Society Within The Public Sector Is Becoming A Surreal Banality

Cerees Moretti

Large Iced Coffee made incorrectly, black with iceCerees Moretti

What has happened to people, and humanity as a collective whole? This cannot be blamed on the pandemic and or lockdown, as it has been happening for a very long time.

You'll find on social media many videos of acts of violence. People in fast food restaurants throwing fists over prices and or delays in receiving their food or even the establishment running out of a particular food item; Road rage, sucker punching innocent people on the street, kids bullying one another then glorifying it on social media, high crime - the list is huge.

While there might be an abundance of factors to point at, such as the economy, demographics, education, substance abuse, poor parenting, the lack of available mental health clinics, or lack of available law enforcement; The question remains, 'Where is personal accountability? Where did it go?

Has moral turpitude become the new norm?

Last month I stopped at a local fast food restaurant drive-thru. I ordered 4 large iced coffees. There were no cars behind me, and there were no other cars in the parking lot. When I drove up to the pickup window, the employee was putting 4 black iced coffees into a cardboard cup holder. I had asked him where was the milk and sugar? He put a handful of creamers and sugar packets into the center of the cup carrier and instructed me to put them in myself as "they" were too busy.

I was able to see inside the establishment. There were no customers. There was nobody behind me. I told the employee that this wasn't a self-service establishment, thus this wasn't what I had ordered, and it didn't look like they were 'busy'. I asked him to please prepare my order correctly or refund my money. This constituted false advertising. He gave me a dirty look, as he went to prepare my order as it is advertised, and I had asked to speak to the manager.

This young woman came to the window, and I proceeded to tell her what had transpired. She laughed at me. I asked her why she was laughing at me? She became cocky. "What do you want me to say?". I replied, "An apology would be a good start, even if it is an empty one".

I could not believe this poor treatment from both the employee and his manager was unprovoked. I felt it was a disgusting display of customer service. I said I was going to call their district office, and reached for my phone. She then becomes hostile and tells me to "get the hell out of her drive-thru" and closed the window in my face. While the phone is ringing, she opens the window, and I asked her what her name was, she refused to provide that information to me, but now she said if I didn't get the "HELL" out of her drive-the and leave, she was calling law enforcement. *In addition, I had a witness in my vehicle.

Since when is this acceptable behavior? Establishment employees are permitted to curse at customers now? Did I miss the memo? I did reach their district office, and the result was even more disturbing. Let's not forget that these drive-thrus have video surveillance. My story checks out. I did not yell, scream, or hurl obscenities. I politely discussed the problem. I was adamant in my dismay and astonishment. They offered no apology. They said they would 'investigate' the matter and get back to me. The result, post 'investigation' was for me to not return to the store because the manager "didn't like me". As an added bonus, approximately a month later, I received a certified letter from their district office, informing me in writing not to return to the store.

A well-known nationwide establishment (franchise) apparently condones this type of vile behavior, thus making it an acceptable form of customer relations.

Do customers now have to concern themselves with potential acts of violence? Apparently, a customer can no longer complain to management about their order being received incorrectly, nonetheless report it to their corporate office.

This isn't an isolated incident. Let me delineate further:

My daughter receives home services for her 6yo son, who is autistic. Her other son is 3yo. She has 2 therapists come into her home twice a week. One is a young man, the other a young woman. The man behaved appallingly. The 3yo was eating a cheese & peanut butter cracker and had peanut butter on his hands. The woman therapist was cleaning the child's hands. The man therapist who was sitting next to her leaned over to the 3yo and said "I'd like to lick your fingers". She was astonished, as was my daughter. 150% inappropriate and unprofessional way to behave with a child client.

The woman immediately felt uncomfortable and had gotten up from her seat on the couch, to throw away the baby wipe she had used to clean the child's fingers. When she returned she positioned her seating away from the man. He moved closer to her. While she began working with the 6yo, the man put his hand on her left thigh and ran it up her dress, as it neared her 'end zone' she pushed his hand away and got up and yelled at him. My daughter scolded him too.

The woman reported this to her employer. My daughter did the same. They both called the Pennsylvania childline to report his inappropriate behavior with the child. The woman therapist is a mandated reporter, and my daughter because she is a client is a permissive reporter, however, because of my daughter's job she too is classified as a mandated reporter. The woman contacted the Susquehanna Township police to make a report of sexual assault. My daughter and her 6yo son were witnesses.

The woman's employer went to terminate her!! They're a well-known mental health clinic in Harrisburg. The woman/victim contacted our advocacy organization (KA). The employer put her on suspension. Locked her out of her work portal. She has PTSD and it is in her employee file, she also has a therapy pet. The employer took offense that KA acted as her designated advocate.

KA dealt with her supervisor who was imposing demands that the woman while on suspension, appears in their Lancaster office for a "disciplinary meeting". KA informed her employer, that she is not required by law to appear thus if she did the employer would be required to pay her, and due to the 5.45$ gallon gas at that time, KA would insist on 20$ in gas reimbursement for the round trip be added to her payroll check,

Incidentally, KA had to remind them, that they locked her out of her employee portal, verbally put her on suspension, and that the employer's intentions were quite clear & concise. They were terminating HER because she reported on the job (OJT) sexual assault. (In their employee corporate handbook it is written that they have an open door policy to report such behavior without fear of retaliation!) Any further disciplinary action could very well be handled via zoom/webFX, (they have telehealth, so this function is readily available) and or be performed via written letter, as this was acceptable during the Covid lockdown.

The meeting never took place. KA vehemently declined. KA put her on "workers compensation", stemming from her PTSD, and the trauma she endured. The employer lawyered up. KA found a trustworthy local attorney to assist in this legal matter. She is also eligible to collect unemployment, even if they didn't fire her, the Pa unemployment rules for eligibility state you may quit your job if you show just cause; This includes discrimination, acts of violence (domestic), hostile work environment et al. Needless to say, she will not be returning to work at that place of employment. *FYI the employer has not terminated that man's employment.

We have laws here in Pennsylvania, especially workplace laws. I cannot ascertain how this employer decided to terminate her employment and not terminate the man who committed these acts of violence. I find this grossly obtuse.

Where is the accountability? We all possess the knowledge to comprehend what is right and what is wrong. So where is the disconnect? Explain it to me as if I were a 4yo. People must be "reprogrammed". How to do this befuddles me. This behavior is 'learned'. This behavior is 'taught' and 'accepted'. Movies. Music. Videos. Books. Change agents et al, etc. So where do we begin?

The decline of society is spiraling out of control. If we do not stop this insanity we will fast become an uncivilized society. That will be extremely dangerous for all.

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I blog about socio-political issues. I'm retired, but my advocacy carries on with 2 local grassroots organizations.

Harrisburg, PA

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