QUESTION 48: BUS DRIVERS
There are many bus drivers who work for a certain bus
company, and some are more aggressive in traffic
than others. In the morning, when people looking
in can see us in tallis etc, I've sometimes wondered
if more aggressive driving could lead to a chillul
Hashem. How concerned should the bus driver, the
passengers, and the bus company be about this? If
a bus driver does something overly aggressive, is it
the passenger's responsibility, halachically (according
to Jewish Law), to say something to him or talk to the
bus company? Should the bus company have a clearly
written policy about guidelines concerning this? If
a bus driver wants to avoid the possibility of chillul
Hashem entirely, and be extra polite in his driving,
and as a result gets his 40 passengers home 15 minutes
later, is it still his obligation, or right, to do so?
There's a range for everything. There isn't anything
wrong with being a little bit more aggressive, because
that's the way bus drivers drive - he's helping out 40
passengers. A little bit of aggressiveness, within
limits, is permissible, and perhaps even recommended.
Beyond that, it's dangerous and it's wrong, and it not
only causes a chilul Hashem, but it could lead to
complaints against the company. So if he is being
more than just a bit aggressive, you should tell him
something. But be careful how to tell him. Tell him,
"You're a great driver, but I think you should be a
little more careful." Or, "It looks to me as if you're
upset over something; please drive more carefully."
But you should tell him. It's dangerous to drive too
quickly and it's a chilul Hashem. He's not expected
to be extra polite. But he should be polite, respectful
It would also be worthwhile to discuss this with someone
else on the bus, and to see if the other person also
has the impression that this bus driver is sometimes
overly aggressive. "Maybe I'm making a mistake", you
should tell the other person, "when I get the jitters
when he drives". If the other fellow concurs, then at
least you know you have another reasonable person who
sees things the same way you do.
Is the bus company obligated to have a policy regarding
'overly aggressive' driving?
They're definitely obligated and they definitely have a
policy. And before you tell the company something,
tell the driver. Let's say the driver doesn't respond,
and he acts as if he couldn't care less, so then you
can take the next step, and tell the company.
NEXT WEEK'S QUESTION 49: BORROWING A TRADE-SHOW PASS
I was able to register on-line to get a free pass to
the PC Expo show, but didn't get around to doing it.
A friend who had a pass went the first day, and offered
to lend me his pass for the second day. Can I use it?
Is there a problem of chillul Hashem when people at the
show assume I'm the person written on the badge, and I
tell them that I'm just borrowing a friend's badge?
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