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Saturday, 12 January 2013

What is the morality of taking a supermarket trolley home?

Five days ago I watched a lady from one of the properties close-by to my home using a supermarket trolley as a wheelbarrow to carry her household waste to the rubbish container in the street. After dumping the refuse bags she headed off back towards her home nonchalantly pushing the trolley. At the time I thought – at least she didn't abandon that in the road and will probably return it to its rightful owner.

Yesterday I watched two men, coming from the same area as the lady had, pushing a supermarket trolley as a wheelbarrow to carry garden waste this time. After having fought to get the bougainvillea cuttings disentangled from the metal mesh of the trolley, and dumped on the pile of other garden waste left in the street, they returned from whence they came with the trolley.

The two incidents caused me to briefly think about the morality of those people who choose to remove trolleys from supermarket premises for their own use. Do they consider they are just borrowing it, or stealing it? Do they consider that it is good customer service by the supermarket to allow them to take away the trolley as a free gift?


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