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  • Writer's pictureRichard A. Jones

How Stupid Do They Think We Are?

How stupid do they think we are?

At times, I have been accused of being sarcastic and cynical, and when it comes to some things I see in our culture, I must confess that I am guilty as charged! I offer this post as maybe a little justification for my cynicism.

I was prompted by an email I received from Black Hills Energy, our electric provider. They often send emails to offer useful hints and insights to help us save money on our electric bill.

I have wondered why a company I pay money to, wants me to pay them less money, but I’m sure there must be some altruistic reasons for this. Yes, that was sarcasm.

This is a picture they sent in the email to help us understand.

I have thought that maybe, they should have sent a warning with the picture: “Warning! Third grade math skills required.”

There seems to be a sense of paranoia today concerning litigation. In 1994, McDonalds restaurant was sued because a drive thru customer spilled hot coffee in her lap. After all the haggling the judge awarded her $640,000 dollars. An appeal by both parties led to an undisclosed settlement. This and other such incidents have led to extreme caution in warning the public of potential dangers. Here are some examples of actual warning labels—Try not to laugh.

Sleep aid—“Warning! May cause drowsiness.”

ATV—“Never use a lit match or open flame to check fuel level.”

Hair Dryer—“Do not use while sleeping.”

Car Sun Shield—“Do not drive with sun shield in place.”

Letter Opener—“Safety goggles recommended.”

Vanishing Ink Fabric Marker—“…Should not be used as a writing                     instrument for signing checks or legal documents.”

Washing Machine—“Do not put any person in this washer.”

Iron—“Do not iron clothes on body.”

Kids Superman Halloween Costume—“This costume does not enable flight or super strength.”

iPod shuffle (on Website)—“Do not eat.”

Scooter—“This product moves when used.”

Child's Kellogg’s Cereal Bowl—“Always use this product with adult supervision.”

Dremel Rotary Tool—This product is not intended for use as a dental drill.”

Christmas Lights—“For indoor or outdoor use only.”

Motorcycle helmet mounted rear-view mirror—“Remember, objects in the mirror are actually behind you.”

Rubber Band Shooter—“Caution! Shoots rubber bands.”

Underarm Deodorant—“Caution! Do not spray in eyes.”

Coffee Cup—“Caution! Hot beverages are hot.”

Children’s Cough Medicine—“Do not drive car or operate machinery.”

Slip of paper in box containing styrofoam packing—“Do not eat.”

Label on bottom of a Desert Box—“Do not turn upside down.”

Baby Stroller—“Remove occupant before folding.”

Supermarket food—“Product will be hot after heating.”

I know—this is quite a list. What can I say? There are so many, I just finally had to stop. But remember, Everybody be safe!

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