“McRage” on the South Shore

mcdonalds-friesThere have been strange and disturbing doings at some nearby fast food restaurants. “McRage” erupted at a Quincy McDonald’s when an employee mistakenly gave a customer a small order of fries when he ordered a large. He then reportedly threw the change in the cashier’s face before hurling an orange cone from the recently mopped floor behind the counter.

Later this same week, a couple went off at a KFC in Norwell when they decided their order was taking too long. After a loud, profanity-laden encounter with the manager, they beat-up a man on line who requested they stop for the sake of the children in line.

This all gives new meaning to the ubiquitous “Want fries with that?” And it makes you pine for the days when the only crime in fast food restaurants was committed by the Hamburglar.

But of course it also makes you wonder what was really going on in the lives of the suspects involved. Desperation caused by job loss? Debt? Relationship issues? It’s a reminder that so much suppressed pain is lurking below the surface ready to boil over at seemingly inconsequential matters. That’s not to condone the behavior but an attempt to better understand where it comes from.

Most of us wouldn’t go nuts at a McDonald’s. But there are all sorts of unhealthy and sinful ways that these emotions get dealt with behind closed doors: addictions, abuse, adultery. These may not end up on the front page of the Patriot-Ledger but they are equally insidious ways of “dealing” with problems.

I will pray for the individuals involved in these two incidents of fast food rage. Just as I will pray for the unknown (to me) folks who are in the throes of emotional trauma and those who face the brunt of their behavior. It is only the risen Christ who can heal what ails us and bring peace to our souls. The one who bears our burdens is forever reaching out his hand, beckoning us to deeper relationship. Faith is not a quick fix but rather one that abides over a lifetime. In other words it’s the exact spiritual opposite of fast food.

One Comment on ““McRage” on the South Shore”

  1. Warren Taylor says:

    While stress from personal problems and a slumped economy may cause some incidents like those you describe, I would suggest an additional cause– no one is teaching proper behavior and manners anymore.

    Try correcting someone’s misbehaving child and see where that gets you. Or consider the parents who fight each other at their kids’ little league games.

    People now think they are entitled to react any way they choose if they don’t get their way. And why not? Our culture focuses so much on entitlement and self and dispenses with obsolete notions like responsibility, ethics, and sin.

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