Sunday, February 18, 2018

The suicide of a livery driver

I read a story that a 61 year old livery driver protesting New York City policies toward ride hailing cars and others came to downtown and committed suicide. Before committing suicide, he wrote at length that how the ride hailing services have increased competition and led to his ruin as he was about to lose his house can’t pay off his cars and bills. He said that he tried his best but he was unable to keep his head above water. Specifically he was ranting against the current governor of New York and the former mayor of New York City of introducing these services thus increasing the competition and threatening his livelihood. It is reported that this is the third suicide in three months for these drivers. I am not here to judge what went through his mind to commit such a grave act leaving behind his family to struggle and make a sense out of their loss but to blame competition for this extreme act will be unfair.
In this globalized economy, there would always be winners and losers and the people who don’t or cannot keep up with the rapid changes are going to lash out. Throughout America, the most industrialized nation on earth, there are people in some industries who would not be able to do the transition to a new job requiring a new skill set and would either die bitter or commit suicide. But suicide is also a selfish way to get out of this situation as the remaining members of the family become helpless grieving for their loss and also angry at the person of leaving them alone to fend for themselves. The less educated lot are already drowning in unemployment and going deeper into drugs and the only way out of it is to commit suicide in some cases. I wish I had a solution for this kind of situation but can only suggest that don’t lose your hope as times do not remain the same and desperate times can be overcome with patience and perseverance.

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