The “carelessness” gene

We, the people of India seem to be genetically programmed to be callous and careless in almost everything that we do in our lives. It is so ubiquitous and obvious that many of us do not even consider it as abnormal or out of place to be callous!. I see it every day, in almost every thing that we do in our routine lives. I am sure you all will agree that it is most obvious in our behaviour on the roads. It is no wonder that our nation is the world capital of deaths in road accidents, loosing almost one and a half lakh people, mostly young and productive people every year to this menace. The fact that most of these accidents are preventable by being a little careful, but still there is no effort to change the behaviour; despite several attempts by the police and other organisations to educate us, makes me think that there is something wrong in our genetic composition. Lets call it the “carelessness gene” for now 🙂

The disease from any abnormal gene depends on the environmental and behavioural factors also, to be expressed and manifest to the fullest. The education we get from our elders, from the schools and other sources seems to lack the ability to teach us to think about safety in what ever we do during our daily activities. Whatever safety rules we are taught seem to loose their seriousness when we see them being flouted so commonly all around us. This manifests as a serious lack of thought for safety measures in most of the things we do as grown-ups. Sometimes such behaviour is considered heroic and brave. Isn’t it the perfect environment for our carelessness gene to be expressed to the fullest.!

Lot of two-wheeler riders do not wear helmets despite knowing that they are at risk of serious head injury if they happen to fall. I see many parents wearing the helmets themselves while the kids are riding without their heads protected. Many cars marketed in our country have failed basic safety tests but are allowed to run on the roads. Driving on the wrong side of the road instead of driving a few more meters, jumping the traffic signals instead of waiting a few more seconds, crossing the roads at will and jumping over the dividers instead of walking/waiting a little more to cross safely.. all these are glaring evidence of this special gene in us expressing itself. The serious risk of injury or loss of life is completely ignored!.

I am sure you must have read or seen the news of kids loosing their lives in road accidents, while travelling in school vans or escalators, while playing near water bodies or bore holes and most recently, while going in a lift at the school. All these incidents originate from one factor.. somewhere someone has been careless.. and unnoticed or ignored despite being obviously so!.. till some innocent life is lost.

The fact that it could have been completely prevented makes me wonder why no body thought about it. Probably, the answer is that it is this genetic predisposition in us to be so callous.. the “carelessness” gene at work.

From safe garbage disposal to building norms, from personal hygiene to food safety measures, from health insurance to financial planning, from mosquito control to public healthcare delivery, and in many other aspects, we seem to be ignoring safety, hardly learning from the incidents that continue to happen all around us. This article may sound a bit of over-generalisation but if you look around and observe, I am sure you can see it.

Unless it is acknowledged that the root cause is the general lack of thought for safety, unless measures are taken to educate ourselves and our children on safety in various aspects, this attitude is unlikely to change. I think that there is a need to spend some time in schools and at home, on cultivating the habit of thinking about safety in our children from a young age. May be we should start a “THINK SAFETY” movement to raise the awareness of the necessity to think about safety.. and help in saving someone from injury or death.. what do you say!?.

Ending on a lighter note, it seems that the expression of the carelessness gene can be controlled only by modification of our behavioural and the environmental factors, until the gene is identified and genetically modified..  😉 .

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Dr Phani Kiran S

Experience and Professionalism

With years of experience in spine surgery, Dr Phani Kiran SSenior Consultant Spine Surgeon will assess you and suggest the treatment option that is right for you.

We at Medspine clinics, understand the importance of educating all our patients about the spinal problems and the most effective ways to take care of their spine.

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