You could hear the ripple across the room while images of steak or salad fall on the floor beside cherry pie while the peas, potato and bread sit on the table waiting for the rest of the meal to be retrieved. “With that comparison, 70:30 is not even acceptable!”
That particular analogy has crossed my mind many times since, and I’ve found myself relating that to more than just a delivery service or food delivered in a restaurant.
Suppose you knew a business person who was honest only 70% of the time. You would likely not visit this person’s place of business if you could not count on his honesty 100% of the time. His business would likely fail.
Children are taught to be honest from a young age. Sometimes, however, they “fudge” a little or embellish a situation that could cause them embarrassment or get them into trouble. If we allow our children to be less than 100% honest, then they run the risk of 90% honesty, then 80% and then 70%. The ratio becomes unacceptable.
We put our children into the care of school teachers every day. Suppose our teachers were only teaching 70% of the time. The other 30% they were reading a book, doing puzzles, knitting, writing letters or doing other things besides the business of teaching. Would our children learn?
In many schools, our grading system shows 70% as a passing grade. In some school systems 60% is passing. This means a student need only learn just over half the material to pass. Is this standard acceptable? Often a student just wants to get through the class with a passing grade. Are we suggesting to our young people they don’t have to give 100%? Not all students can get an “A”, but shouldn’t we encourage them to give 100% all the time even when they don’t want to?
Suppose no one recycled. The amount of trash would be staggering. There are companies who are not environmentally responsible and dump harmful material in our oceans and waterways thinking surely their dumping won’t cause any problems. What if, however, they aren’t the only ones dumping these toxic wastes into the water? What if 30% of all companies in the United States dumped contaminating material into the water? Would this be acceptable?
The same is true with air pollution. If our air were 30% polluted with toxic gases; that would leave only 70% of good air to breathe. Do we want to give our grandchildren and great grandchildren air that is polluted even 30%, or more? It is our responsibility, as individuals working together, to see that our air and water is clean and clear.
70% to 30% of doing good is never good enough. Whether it’s a delivery service, honesty, recycling, pollution, learning, teaching or what ever we as humans have the opportunity to do, we should always give our best. Our best should always be 100%.