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Overstating the Obvious

Updated on June 1, 2009

"Caution: toasted subs may be extremely hot."

I read this phrase on the wrapper of a SubWay sandwich I ate for lunch today. Upon reading it, I was reminded of the lawsuits over hot coffee at McDonald's and other similar incidents that have made the news over the past decade. I realize the warnings are clearly outlined to prevent such things from happening, but come on! Common sense says if I buy something hot, it is...well, hot! So I automatically use my discretion. I didn't realize it is a hard concept to grasp. The only people who wouldn't be able to understand that would be tiny children (who, I might add, can't even read), because even older people who are the illiterate and people unfamiliar with English know better when handling hot foods and beverages. It all goes back to touching a hot stove. Sometimes you learn the hard way that it's not such a good idea.

Anyone who is injured from something warm they buy should take it as a lesson learned, albeit a painful one. I know we live in a sue-happy society, but really, that is not grounds for complaints. Personally, I would rather have my hot chocolate hot and my hamburger patty not frozen in the middle! Forgive me if I sound crazy! So truly, only an idiot would want to complain about something being dangerously hot, when such extreme temperatures cannot be helped when it comes to what you consume. Even if you make something by your own hand in the comfort of home, of course you know to give your food and beverages a cool down time. You might even blow on it for good measure. Very few people can stomach anything scorching, anyway. If we were to be fair, all cold items should also be clearly marked. I mean, wouldn't you want to know if you should be concerned about brain freeze? What about the possibility of tooth sensitivities or cavities?

The only time warnings should be in place is in alerting people of possible allergens. That is a legitimate concern, where it can be the difference between life and death. Unfortunately, people have died as a result of consuming something unknowingly in the products they consumed. I've yet to hear of a pharmacy that was sued over dispensing a drug that caused a person to have an adverse reaction, because if there is a known allergy, a doctor would not prescribe a harmful medication. And if the complications are a first-time occurrence, then measures to correct this are taken in rapid response.

So I think really that anyone who's ever sued over a trivial matter like this did so because they were embarrassed and felt the need to blame someone, when they knew better but didn't want to admit it. I am curious to know that for every person who complained, were they otherwise preoccupied by talking on their cell phones? Or busy unleashing road rage at the guy who cut them off in traffic? If so, then they need to not be allowed to drive or be part of society. They will be the very people who mindlessly cause accidents through their careless behavior and cost us all a pretty penny.


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