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According to Kant’s “categorical imperative,” when making a decision, consequences are the most important part of making a decision. So, if someone wants to break the law, it’s okay as long as no one is hurt (For example, if someone wants to steal a small loaf of bread from the store). As a rebellious college student, I can completely relate to Kant’s theory.
In September 2017, my favorite actor, Benedict Cumberbatch, was going to be on The Late Show with Jimmy Fallon. I was so excited because I wanted to go backstage to show him a film idea. Said film idea involved him playing a guy who could turn into animals, based on one of his favorite childhood shows (and by extension, one of my own favorites) Manimal. Moreover, if he accepted this role, women would be very excited to see him tear of his clothes.
Sounds good, right? Not really. While at first I considered asking a friend to go to the show to see him, I decided it would be better to go see him myself. As a person with mild autism, I couldn’t foresee the consequences. I was too excited to meet him. Around the time of the show, I had a meeting with my tutor. Not to mention that a train ride to New York could take as long as one hour. So when yours truly finally got to the city, it was too late—the show was already over.
Not only was I unable to go to the show and see Benedict, I was unable to find a way back home. My first decision was to go to a hotel, just like Eloise. It sounded like a good idea at the time, until I realized that prices went up to $1000. I tried to use my debit card, but I obviously didn’t have the money.
So I decided to just camp out on a bench. However, I more often than not kept getting caught by the police, who were concerned for my safety. I was too afraid to tell them my actual information, for fear of getting busted by my parents or getting arrested. So I lied and told them my name was “Jessica Chase” (Jessica Chase happened to be the name of the main character’s daughter in my film idea, whom I wanted to play in the film.)
Eventually, someone found me walking around. Instead of taking advantage of me (just my luck), he noticed how disoriented I looked and decided to help me. We even played a game of chess together (Not strip chess, not beer chess, just ordinary run-of-the-mill chess).
I was eventually able to find my way back home, but not before getting into a lot of complications along the way, which included, but were not limited to, being stuck on the street after being unable to find a taxi, getting trapped in a train “loop” by getting lost and accidentally taking trains around New York on the subway, and losing my cell phone.
If I learned anything from my adventure, it’s that you should always foresee the consequences before making a decision. You may think the consequences are positive, but you could be dead wrong. Kant thought that consequences were very vital to consider while making a decision, and to some extent, he was right. I don’t want to be trapped in New York City in the middle of the night ever again. After this situation, my parents said that trips into the city—at least without a group or chaperone—were off-limits. And to be honest, I can’t blame them for making this decision.