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People Share How Simple Rules Backfired Massively

Rules were made to be broken, right? Sometimes you don't even have to break the rules to make things interesting, you just have to get a bit creative with how you follow them.


Reddituser Orb_Detsoob asked:

"What's a rule that was implemented somewhere, that massively backfired?"

Boredom Begets Mischief

"No card games at school"

When I was in elementary/middle school Magic The Gathering and the Pokemon card game were pretty popular. Almost all of the guys played and would get together after lunch to play before classes started again.

Here is where it's important for me to mention that this was a Christian school. It probably didn't take long for a teacher, administrator, or helicopter parent to wonder what all the fuss was about. Sure enough, one of them probably got a hold of an MTG card, saw art depicting a demon, and decided that this had to be the work of Satan to warp our young minds.
Almost over night, all trading card games were banned from school. Any cards would be confiscated until the end of the school year.

Well, you now have several dozen pre-pubescent boys with about 30 minutes of free time and *nothing* to do. So we did boy sh!t. Ran around, pushed each other, went places we weren't supposed to, just overall got into mischief. All this time they had a free baby sitter that was keeping us all engaged, quiet, civil, all while reinforcing quick math skills and teaching multi-level problem solving.

The next year we got a new administrator and card games were allowed at school again.

-JohnnyUtah_

Technically Acceptable

The previous school I worked at decided that all shirts needed to have the school name or emblem (which was a fancy letter 'E') on them to be dress code appropriate. That's all the handbook said. No clarification on how the name or emblem was designed or the color or if it had to be permanently affixed to the clothing. The students hated the policy and, being in high school, looked for any loophole possible. They found one due to the lack of clarity of the handbook policy. The kids would make paper 'E's and pin them to their shirts. Thus, they could wear whatever they wanted and by pinning the 'E' to the shirt, were still dress code compliant. I thought it was pretty genius. The administration did not.

-jamer0658

Did Nobody Forsee This One? 

Middle school wanted to create a "trash free environment" so they removed the trash cans from the parking lots, halls, and cafeteria. Then just told the kids to "toss your trash when you get home or in a classroom"

The amount of litter skyrocketed overnight, after a week or so they brought back the cans.

-nagol93

Malicious Compliance

At my old job, some people abused lunch so they made a few of em text in when they started and finished lunch. One guy specifically would text the start time, place he got food, his order in detail, the address, price, etc. Even when he bought a snack while out. That stopped a week later

-Tenshotshad

POPCORN (1pc) sent 11:52am

POPCORN (1pc) sent 11:52am

POPCORN (1pc) sent 11:52am

POPCORN (1pc) sent 11:52am

-LockoutFFA

Double The Trouble

Air pollution became a big problem in late-80's/early-90's Athens, mostly due to the number of old, heavily-polluting cars on the roads. So the Greek government made a law where only cars with odd-numbered final digits on their number plates (1, 3, 5, 7 and 9 etc.) could be driven on odd-numbered days (1st, 3rd, 5th etc.)- and only evenly-numbered cars could drive on evenly-numbered days. Sounds great doesn't it, they'll halve the number of cars on their roads right - nope, they doubled it - everyone bought one old, highly-polluting car that had an odd-numbered plate and another with an even-numbered plate - nobody could park and the air was worse than before.

-Chopper3

Arid Environments

Dry Counties were meant to reduce use of alcohol in certain areas, but they result in people who want to get drunk driving further away from home to do so, increasing the odds and frequency of drunk driving accidents. Also many attempts to rescind dry county laws end up getting countered by campaigns paid for by the bars and liquor stores that set up on the edge of dry counties, typically under the guise of religious messages.

-BigRed2989-

Gotta Be Cool

Last summer in Sweden, bus drivers in some counties started wearing shorts due to the heatwave. After being denied to continue doing so by management, they started wearing skirts instead. Dress code policys had banned shorts, but not skirts.

-SowerPlave

You're Just Making It Worse

Universities love to mess with alcohol related things. My University decided to pull over campus busses on weekend nights and give out tickets to drunk passengers, as well as look out for walking drunks. The following month had more DUIs than the entire previous year. Everyone's excuse was they were scared to walk or take the bus, so they drove.

-MudSama

To Be Fair, You Can't Really Ban Stupidity

My company had an injury (in a facility in a different country no less) that resulted in lost time. The guy was hammering on an adjustable wrench because the nut was too tight... instead of banning stupidity, they decide to ban adjustable wrenches in every facility. All fine and dandy except we dont have wrenches at our machines, because everyone just uses an adjustable wrench. About three weeks into buying thousands of wrenches they decided adjustable wrenches were safe again and stopped buying us regular wrenches.

-DerpiesG

Guilt Is A Powerful Motivator

A famous example from Freakonomics was when a day care started charging a small fine for parents who picked up their children late. Instead of resulting in more on-time arrivals, the new policy actually caused more late pick-ups. This is because the parents were originally worried that a late pick-up would be a significant burden on the day care employees, but because the fine was so small (only a few dollars), they decided that it must not be a big inconvenience for the day care.

-Idoitforthelolz3

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These people have certainly made their marks on the history books.

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We always think we know what is right and what is wrong, what's the truth and what's a lie. The reality is that most of what we know is just an opinion or a partial truth that we've filled in with our own rational (or irrational) explanation. These opinions that we pass off as 'facts' are far from it and it takes a lot of courage to look at yourself and admit you were wrong or misinformed about something. Everyone likes to pretend they're on a different level, but the truth is you're not so different from the people you disagree with. Meditate on that.

Here are a some people admitting strong opinions they no longer have, and what it took to change those views. Redditor u/segafarm asks:

What is the strongest opinion you once held but no longer hold, and what make you change your mind?

Jade-Colored Glasses

I used to think that being cynical/negative was realistic and somehow smarter than being positive. I've since realized that a "be prepared for the worst but expect the best" is far better. We can't control the outcome of anything in life. Being negative makes you miserable rather than protected from bad things happening.

nanaimo

Cant' Have A Conversation With A Parrot

I used to be a conspiracy theorist. Believed that 9/11 was committed by the US government and that we never landed on the moon.

Once I started looking outside of the echo chamber I was in and started looking at alternate explanations, theories and listening to different viewpoints I soon realized how ridiculous those notions were.

Not-A-Real-Subreddit

A Big, Mysterious Universe

I used to be a strict, hardline atheist. I was the kind of bastard that would bring the subject up for no reason, just to argue. I don't know what the hell my problem was. Now I feel like, the universe is big, I don't know what all might be out there, I don't really care. I live as if there is no afterlife, because that makes sense to me. But if you don't, and you believe in one, that's perfectly fine, and maybe you're right. Who knows?

CDC_

Portrait Of An Artist As A Young Man

I used to believe anyone can be a successful artist if they just put the time and effort into it. There is no such thing as talent, only hard work.

What changed my mind: Art school. There were quite a few people that tried hard, but just weren't able to achieve professional level art.

berfica

You're Not Your Emotions

For the longest time, I thought my emotions were in a sense the most "real" part of me. I was always a very emotional person and I didn't make a real effort to control it as I thought it was a good thing, that I was just being honest with myself. Over time though, I started to become very depressed and the negative emotions just keep adding on and on. I thought "this is just how I am I guess". Unfortunately it started hurting other relationships I had, and everything changed when my girlfriend broke up with me. After a lot of reading I found that emotions are not who we are at all. They're just reactions and there's nothing that requires us to act on them or feed them. I'm learning to let it go through me instead of hanging on like I used to.

inca829

Don't Forget Big Willie Style

I used to think that hip hop was bland, repetitive, and all about clubbing and sh*t. Then one of my friends pointed me towards people like Kendrick Lamar, Eminem, Nas and Run The Jewels, who all have great songs and clever lyrics, and I realized that Hip Hop is pretty great.

6quid

The A**holes Will Always Find A Way

I used to think that the catholic church was responsible for all of the hateful people in it. I gave people the chance to challenge my opinion and someone explained it very nicely to me. Basically, the hateful people use the church as an excuse, if you remove the church they will gladly find another excuse.

TianaLeFong

High Times

Giphy

I used to tell myself that I would never stop smoking weed, and that I'd be happy if my kids grew up to be pot smokers... Now I have a kid, don't smoke, and realize what an idiot I was when all I did was smoke all day. I could probably be in a much better position if I hadn't smoked all through college.

But I mean, I still think pot's okay... Just in moderation.

edgar__allan__bro

The Road Less Traveled

"All taxation is theft, man! I made my money without any help from public institutions or the infrastructure they support, I should be able to keep every last dime of it!"

Naturally that was when I was 18, living at home rent free, and working at Pizza Hut as a delivery driver who relied upon public roads for pretty much every cent I made.

ExtremelyLongButtock

All Those PSA's Didn't Do Much

The whole D.A.R.E anti-drugs. Yes crack and heroin is bad, but they over dramatized what happens when you do smaller drugs. Weed isn't even a gateway drug, alcohol is more of a gateway drug. When I saw weed for the first time I thought it was tobacco (This was after all the D.A.R.E training too). Letting the government teach you your morales and philosophy is a thing that sheep do. Don't be a sheep.

PlantTreesForToday

Where Would We Be Without The Kindness Of Strangers

I used to think people on welfare and state assistance just weren't trying hard enough. I grew up spoiled and entitled and it seemed like any kind of charity was a stigma.

Then, my husband became chronically ill, and the economy took a shit. My family has been close to homelessness more than once, and have relied on state insurance and assistance off and on throughout the past few years. There are definitely people out there who abuse the system, but some just get stuck in a horrible cycle of poverty.

I also work in a school that has a high number low income and refugee families. It has really opened my eyes to the struggles that some people face.

BuffyandtheHellcats

He's Still There For You, The Best He Can Be

I could go through life and could seek meaningful advice from my Dad who has always been there for me.

Now he has been reduced to a feeble condition, I am starting to understand I'm out there on my own, and even what he's sure of is suspect given his mental and physical facilities have been rapidly deteriorating in his late seventies. I feel horrible that I have noticed this long before he did - or at least admitted as much.

june606

Clear Your Mind

This was before I received an ADHD diagnosis. When my doctor referred me to an ADHD specialist, first of all I refused to believe him and was kind of slighted that he even suggested that I could possibly have ADHD.

I had a very strong opinion that if I get a diagnosis that I would refuse to take prescribed amphetamines because they are "bad" and "addictive" and that they would ruin my life.

Then I actually tried the prescription and it was like magic.

Xingua92

Going Through The Whole Spectrum

Used to be fairly open with my views on immigration policy. Then I worked for a while down near Corpus Christie doing immigration work. I'd say one out if every hundred people that came through our office was going to somebody who actually wanted to work and try to make a living here. So many people simply wanted to exist enough to get welfare. Many were young men who we would later defend against exportation as a result of their criminal activity. I began to despise the work of defending these men and wished they would be deported.

Now, I'm dating a foreign girl and we are in the legal immigration process. She has advanced degrees and skills, so that makes things a little easier. But it does make me resent people who just bypass the system. We can't bypass the system because I imagine my participation in immigration fraud could get me disbarred.

RogerDeanVenture



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