There are a lot of morans out there. Some of them are lovely people – this isn’t a message of hate – but they’re still morans, bless them.
And they could stop. It’s not easy, but it can be done. Heck, a lot of the time, I’m a moran.
Disclaimer: I use the term moran, of course, intentionally. Some of you will remember the source of this word.
I use it, like I say, not as a hateful thing although it is negative, I admit. I also don’t use morons, specifically, for reasons of developing sensibility. This is rather a long story and relates to my idea that, while I don’t consider myself racist (Racist Butt alert), I don’t doubt I would seem racist if I and my cultural baggage were dropped off a hundred years from now. And that’s cool. John Carter and The Time Traveller were pretty smart, thoughtful representatives of their ages, and they still had stuff to say about Redskins and Tasmanians.
Anyway, the point is, people rail against political correctness but that’s just the way things go. People who rail against it tend to be the ones guilty of saying obnoxiously crude and bigoted things (myself among them). And yes, often that objection is entirely reasonable and there has to be a line at which you say “no more, now you’re just being over-sensitive, I’m going to keep saying it like it is and you can stop being a pussy.”
But that’s a moving target.
Most recently, it’s been retard that’s getting the treatment. This is a popular term on the Internet – someone or other is a retard, some idea or other is retarded – and it really doesn’t overlap with the mentally handicapped (who are strong and worthy of respect) in any but the narrowest conceptual and terminological way. But it can, and it’s derogatory, using a description of a person as an insult and thus turning that person’s characteristic into an insultingly negative one. USians don’t like it when we describe stupid or ignorant things as “that’s pretty American”, homosexuals don’t like it when people insult others for “being a fag”, and those with iodine deficiencies don’t take it kindly when a person calls some idiot or bigot or dangerous sociopath a ‘cretin’.
Where does it end? Dumb has long since fallen out of favour as a descriptor for either the stupid or the mute, although it still gets its casual and ostensibly harmless usage. Stupid in turn comes from the Latin stupere, meaning astonished (we get stupor from the same place); idiot from the Greek idiōtēs (person lacking professional skill, a private citizen) and the Latin idiota (ordinary person, layman) which only later came to refer to the unintelligent or ignorant; moron itself from from moros to refer to an adult with a mental age of between 8 and 12. Why, sooner or later, we won’t be able to use any negative or derogatory words at all! But then, in some conceptually-distant if not chronologically-distant utopian future, maybe we won’t need to.
 And you thought the idea of the average man on the street being an idiot was a new thing.
 Interesting note, moros meant dull and oxy meant sharp, which is where oxymoron comes from. Moron was once used to describe people with an IQ of 51 to 70, and was one step above imbecile (26 to 50) and two steps above idiot (0 to 25). Moros is also the name of the planet Keill Randor is from. Whether that means the Legionaries were blunt instruments or that they were always two steps ahead of the idiots (until meeting bad guys who were two steps ahead of them), I leave up to the reader to decide.
Speaking of utopian futures, this was still by way of a disclaimer.
Now, in that future, morans (for so I call them, in the knowledge that this term can only be seen as derogatory to people actually named Moran, and to these people I would say “well, please note the capitalisation and do try not to be pussies”) will not be allowed to drive, or indeed operate any kind of heavy machinery. Until that day, however, I’d like to minimise the damage they do to me personally by observing a few simple rules, for example:
To car drivers passing a pedestrian in winter (specifically me, and specifically in slush-time): Please note that changing lanes to keep from spraying me with slush is a nice thing to do, if you can. And I appreciate it. However, it takes forward planning. If you do it too late, you’ll achieve nothing but being in the middle of the median-strip slushpile when you get to me, thus drenching me more. This is doubly true if you’re driving too fast (and let’s face it: you are, because you are a moran). Furthermore, you may be unable to change lanes due to oncoming cars (ever notice how they always come when you’re passing a pedestrian, so all three pass each other simultaneously?), which mean you’re speeding past me and I’ll get slushed. Best bet either way is to just stay in your lane, and slow down so your tyres no longer spray slush. This is a classic example of how being a moran does not mean you’re a bad person – often, quite the contrary. But being nice doesn’t automatically make the shit you do OK.
To truck drivers in icy conditions: Your vehicles are huge and heavy and have long braking distances. You probably have training and experience in operating your trucks, so technically you will know this, but those of you who are also morans should take into account that the training and the being a moran will cancel each other out. So, therefore, do not tailgate people, especially when the roads are icy. They might even be driving slower than the speed limit (if, for example, they’re not morans). Still don’t tailgate them. If they slow or skid or turn or hit something, you’re going to crash into them and kill everybody, and the fact that you’ll probably also kill yourself is a small (although extant) consolation. The rule of thumb is to leave a three-second gap. For trucks, this should be longer. For trucks on ice, it should be longer still. Slow the fuck down.
To morans attempting to merge lanes with … you know what? Now I think about it, almost all of these tips boil down to driving more slowly.
That’s right, slowness. Something to which you, as a moran, should find yourself taking naturally.
So do it.