Are we nice? To paraphrase noted Floridian Ernest Hemingway, “nah.”
Uh, you are nice, though. Of course you are. As part of its A Call for Kindness campaign, Verizon partnered with nonprofit Kindness.org to rank the kindest states in America. The study insists that residents of all 50 states have “high capacity” for kindness (we’ll see about that!). But the kindest states are, in order, Kentucky, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Georgia and North Dakota.
Where does Florida rank on this list? A stunning 47th!
These rankings usually don’t mean much, so corporate it hurts. They’re all, “Florida suffering from acute lack of cheesecake, in a shocking new study from The Cheesecake Factory.” Some years ago, we learned that the University of South Florida was ranked the hairiest college by… yep, Schick Hydro razors. That one was real.
What’s the brand benefit for Verizon here? Maybe the staff is tired of people coming in with a bone to pick about SO-CALLED UNLIMITED DATA. Fostering kindness helps when it’s time to dispute charges in a strip mall next to a Cicis Pizza.
This study had too many juicy details not to unpack. It is my job to defend Florida up to 30 percent of the time. We are the most misunderstood state outside of, apparently, Arizona, Kansas and Maryland.
Let’s look at the scenarios. Based on a survey of thousands of Americans, the kindest people would:
- Become an organ donor for a family member. More specifically, they would donate part of their liver.
I can see how Florida would rank low here. If we’re talking livers, ours are shot like hockey pucks (go Bolts!). Our livers are what’s left of Pennywise the clown when he is defeated by courage. We would donate our livers, if we could. This question has a semantic problem.
- Pull a stranger from a burning car.
Dramatic! Floridians were probably being practical in their responses. I mean, how often are we going to find ourselves in a Fast & Furious situation, despite fantasies of taking down mercenaries while driving a souped-up Dodge Charger? Also, the state is surrounded by water, soooo, next question.
- Adopt and raise a family member.
Depends on the family member. Please provide names.
- Cheer up a family member.
See above! Like, sometimes family members don’t want to be cheered up. Sometimes, they have created a comfortable misery and are shame-cycling, and sometimes, your Verizon minutes are low and you have to make a choice.
- Call a friend to encourage them.
Encourage them to do what, exactly? Knock off a dollar store? No, I’m not doing that. Hurry up with the burritos? You bet. Chase after a dream despite the odds? Let me check my bars.
- Lend money to someone in a financial crisis.
Possibly, but I’m not giving Kay $3,000 again for buy-in to the direct sales company. We never got that back last time, and I cannot offload these essential oils.
- Give up $6.40 if that meant a stranger got $10.
Nope, Floridians would definitely not do this.
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