Monday, October 25, 2010

New Ethics

I was recently faced with an ethical dilemma. This one was unlike any I had heretofore encountered. Let me tell you the story.

I had to drive my daughter to an activity on a hot day. There is no air-conditioning in my car, so it was particularly unbearable. The sun was hot and breathing could cause you to break a sweat. I did what any normal person would do: I got something cold to drink. I went through the drive through window at McDonald's and got a large drink for a dollar. What a deal! The problem was that it went too fast. It took me 10 minutes to get my daughter to her appointment and then I was on my way back home. By the time I got back to McDonald's I was hot again and my drink was gone.

The problem is this: If I was inside McDonald's I would have re-filled my drink cup several times, for free. I would have still been in the restaurant after the 20 minutes that my trip took. So, would it be stealing if I took my cup into the same restaurant that I purchased it from and fill it up? Is it wrong to take advantage of the privileges that come with the purchase?

What about if it was a different McDonald's location? The money is the same. It is going to the same general place. Is that wrong?

And one related ethical quandary is this- When I fill my fountain pop cup at my local gas station and then take a drink before topping it off and putting the lid on, is that wrong? Is it a sin to steal a sip? Is it even sinning?

I am looking forward to your opinions.

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