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Someone Tweets This Shopping Cart Test That Tells If You’re A Good Or A Bad Person And It’s Pretty Accurate
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Other2 years ago

Someone Tweets This Shopping Cart Test That Tells If You’re A Good Or A Bad Person And It’s Pretty Accurate

OK, so there’s this theory floating around Twitter that says it can determine whether someone is a good or a bad person faster than any priest or psychology test.

From the looks of it, the theory originated in the dark corners of 4chan but it became really popular when Jared from Atlanta shared it on Twitter. It quickly received over 680K likes there, with people discussing if it’s valid or not.

So what is all the fuss about? The theory proposes that a person’s moral character can be determined when they decide to return a shopping cart to a designated “cart return” spot or not. As simple as the statement is, the rationale behind it, however, is a bit more complex.

More info: Twitter

Image credits: ANTICHRISTJARED

Image credits: ANTICHRISTJARED

Most people in the comments under the thread agree that returning the shopping cart is the sensible thing to do and refusing to do so can make a strong case against you in the “are you a good person” category. These folks include former retail employees, who — for better or worse — have definitely seen the worst side of humanity. Trust me, I’ve worked as a waiter.

Psychotherapist and counselor Tati Silva said that The Shopping Cart Theory makes some valid points. “It goes back to character and personality, both used to describe someone’s behavior,” Silva told Bored Panda. “Personality is shaped by one’s heredity and environment in which they were exposed, easy to ready (Lickeman, 2011). As for one’s character like honesty, virtue, and kindliness. They are revealed over time, through various situations.”

“Characters are heavily influenced by the different situations we engage in. Therefore, if you choose not to take the shopping cart back it will expose your character,” Silva explained. “Because there is not a law that prohibits it or says that is wrong. The behavior will continue because it is the individual that needs to determine what is right or wrong, bad or good because — again — there aren’t any social norms or rules that specify this behavior might be considered inappropriate.”

Silva believes the shopping cart theory can expand to other behaviors too, such as throwing rubbish, cigarette butts, gum, masks, or gloves on the floor. Even laughing when someone falls or doesn’t hold the door for others. “That might reveal your moral character. One might do it without being aware of it because it is engraved in their habit. However, that can be changed by expanding self-awareness. It is likely the first step in gaining control over any behavior you wish to change. “

Image credits: ANTICHRISTJARED

Image credits: ANTICHRISTJARED

Image credits: ANTICHRISTJARED

Interestingly, similar moral dilemmas are often used by researchers to identify psychopathic traits as they can offer a deeper understanding of someone’s judgment. In one study, for example, a team of psychologists asked participants to respond to a set of hypothetical scenarios and found that those who gave utilitarian responses scored higher on measures of psychopathy.

One scenario in particular, developed by philosopher Philippa Foot, has been used like this for decades. According to Spring, The Trolley Dilemma, which was adapted by Judith Jarvis Thomson in 1985, goes like this: “A runaway trolley is about to run over and kill five people and you are standing on a footbridge next to a large stranger; your body is too light to stop the train, but if you push the stranger onto the tracks, killing him, you will save the five people. Would you push the man?”

The study, published in the journal Cognition, determined that people who answered ‘Yes’ had higher scores on measures of psychopathy, Machiavellianism, and life meaninglessness compared to those who chose not to push the innocent man. Also, fun fact, the illustration for The Shopping Cart Theory looks as if it was done based on The Trolley Dilemma. Who knows, maybe it inspired this whole thing.

People had a lot to say about the theory

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Daniel (ShadowDrakken)
Community Member
2 years ago

I always return my own cart. 100% of the time. And I frequently return nearby stray carts as well. Partly because I try to be respectful of the employees, but also because they're a driving/parking hazard and it's annoying in a crowded parking lot to have to pass up perfectly good spots because some jerk felt the need to abandon their cart in the middle of a spot >:[

Troux
Community Member
2 years ago

I also return my cart 100% of the time, and I'll usually spend a minute aligning a few other carts in the corral when I do. BUT I understand there is logic - albeit a cruel and inhuman logic - in not returning the carts, People will reason that because there is already someone paid to do this job, that it would be wasteful and 'unfair' to make someone more valuable do it. This is just a byproduct of a fiercely capitalist society which teaches us that your salary determines how valuable your time is, and dollar value is more important than respect/kindness or other social values. This is why you may notice a lot of the rudest drivers in the nicer cars - some people truly feel that they deserve to be in front of you because they are worth more money. $ > life in capitalism!

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Jack Chandra
Community Member
2 years ago

I always thought putting the cart back was what normal humans did.

Aunt Messy
Community Member
2 years ago

It is. That's why it's such a useful test.

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Moriarty2
Community Member
2 years ago

The person who said they don't return it because they have kids in the car is just giving a silly excuse. I specifically park my car next to cart returns so that I can put the cart back and have an eye on my child as I do it. Just plan ahead. If I have to walk a few extra feet to park near a cart return then yay more exercise for me! Also, I guess I get bonus points because I return other people's abandoned carts when I see them too. There's no reason to disrespect already hard working people at these stores by abandoning carts.

Dilly Millandry
Community Member
2 years ago

Yeah - that's just making up reasons. A lot of car parks have parent and child bays which are near the shop and near trolley bays. Even if it is that far away they made it to the car with the shopping and the children safely so they can make that extra bit of an effort with the trolley - take the children with them to the trolley bay just as they did when doing the shopping! Trolleys left anywhere can often end up rolling into cars and causing damage - no need to be that lazy or that selfish.

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Daniel (ShadowDrakken)
Community Member
2 years ago

I always return my own cart. 100% of the time. And I frequently return nearby stray carts as well. Partly because I try to be respectful of the employees, but also because they're a driving/parking hazard and it's annoying in a crowded parking lot to have to pass up perfectly good spots because some jerk felt the need to abandon their cart in the middle of a spot >:[

Troux
Community Member
2 years ago

I also return my cart 100% of the time, and I'll usually spend a minute aligning a few other carts in the corral when I do. BUT I understand there is logic - albeit a cruel and inhuman logic - in not returning the carts, People will reason that because there is already someone paid to do this job, that it would be wasteful and 'unfair' to make someone more valuable do it. This is just a byproduct of a fiercely capitalist society which teaches us that your salary determines how valuable your time is, and dollar value is more important than respect/kindness or other social values. This is why you may notice a lot of the rudest drivers in the nicer cars - some people truly feel that they deserve to be in front of you because they are worth more money. $ > life in capitalism!

Load More Replies...
Jack Chandra
Community Member
2 years ago

I always thought putting the cart back was what normal humans did.

Aunt Messy
Community Member
2 years ago

It is. That's why it's such a useful test.

Load More Replies...
Moriarty2
Community Member
2 years ago

The person who said they don't return it because they have kids in the car is just giving a silly excuse. I specifically park my car next to cart returns so that I can put the cart back and have an eye on my child as I do it. Just plan ahead. If I have to walk a few extra feet to park near a cart return then yay more exercise for me! Also, I guess I get bonus points because I return other people's abandoned carts when I see them too. There's no reason to disrespect already hard working people at these stores by abandoning carts.

Dilly Millandry
Community Member
2 years ago

Yeah - that's just making up reasons. A lot of car parks have parent and child bays which are near the shop and near trolley bays. Even if it is that far away they made it to the car with the shopping and the children safely so they can make that extra bit of an effort with the trolley - take the children with them to the trolley bay just as they did when doing the shopping! Trolleys left anywhere can often end up rolling into cars and causing damage - no need to be that lazy or that selfish.

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