HAPPENINGS: Our disposable lifestyle impacts jobs

Janice Crose | Special to the News Bulletin

I love conveniences and don't think I would have done well had I lived during the 19th century: Horses, buggies, dirt floors, outhouses, boiling laundry, carrying buckets of water to rinse the clothes and do dishes, no reliable refrigeration and so on.

We have an abundance of useful and time savings devices at our disposal these days.

We have electricity that powers our microwaves, lights in our homes, beautiful refrigerators, washers, dryers, as well as indoor plumbing and reliable vehicles. We also have grocery stores and restaurants galore, as well as fast food places.

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We also generate a lot more trash because of these conveniences.

We receive our fast food orders in bags, wrappers and other containers, which is convenient, but generates a lot of trash. I don't have a solution, but realize that we are generating huge amounts of trash with our addiction to take-out food. I know there must be a solution to this problem.

Some jobs are becoming disposable. We now have self-serve check out stands in grocery and other stores; self-serve kiosks where we can order our own food, both in sit down restaurants as well as fast food.

We now have ATM machines that can accept deposits as well as dispense cash and we can pay our bills online.

While some of these may save time and money for the business, jobs are being lost and some people are suffering as a result of these job losses. I don't use self check out as I don't want to replace an employee with a machine, but the days are coming when we will have little choice.

There is "Flippy" the burger robot that is being used at some White Castle locations and the company is planning on expanding the robots to more stores in 2021  (https://www.thrillist.com/news/nation/what-is-flippy-burger-flipping-robot).

Flippy uses artificial intelligence to assist in the kitchens of fast food restaurants. He never needs breaks, time off or vacation, so he is a great employee. However, as wonderful as Flippy is, he is replacing employees in the kitchen, which means less jobs.

There are certainly two sides to this innovative robot.

With the innovation of robots like Flippy, employees need to pay attention to their positions by being on time, paying attention to their job, and treating customers and management with respect, as well as keeping up with current industry technology and standards.

This ensures they will be a valued member of the team and grow with the business.

Let's not allow our jobs to become disposable. We can do better than that!

Janice Lynn Crose

Janice Lynn Crose, a former accountant, lives in Crestview with her husband, Jim; her two rescue collies, Shane and Jasmine; and two cats, Kathryn and Prince Valiant.