China plans to rank all its citizens based on their “social credit” by 2020. People can be rewarded or punished according to their scores. Like private financial credit scores, a person’s social scores can move up and down according to their behavior — taking care of the elderly earns points, jaywalking loses points. We can’t help but wonder what a social credit system would look like in the Florida Keys.
1. Earn a point for every free T-shirt in your drawer connected to a charitable event; lose a point if you have more than one pair of long pants in your closet.
2. Earn a point if your kid is SCUBA certified or has never seen snow; lose a point if your kid can’t bait a fishing hook or maneuver a paddleboard.
3. Lose a point for being on the wrong side of Marathon’s community swimming pool argument. (Dammit, Karen, you’re ruining it for everybody!)
4. Earn a point for training iguanas to perform menial tasks such as answering the business line or picking the kids up from school while you’re fishing.
5. Lose a point for putting one of those stroke-inducing-with-the-wattage-of-a-thousand-suns-flashing lights on your bicycle; earn a point by riding your bicycle in a manner that does not bait car drivers into committing vehicular homicide.
6. Earn a point for adopting your pet from the FKSPCA; lose a point for adopting your pet from the Amazon River and then releasing it into the Everglades.
7. Earn a point for shopping, eating and supporting all things local; lose TEN points for complaining about mini-lobster season invaders and then going out multiple times a day because you’re “local and I deserve this.”
8. Earn a point if the collective horsepower of your watercraft is greater than the horsepower of your automobiles; lose a point if you have Jet Ski.
9. Lose a point for driving through Islamorada on a Saturday afternoon.
10. Earn a point if you have ever partied with Roman Gastesi, five points if you smoked reefer with Jimmy Buffett, 100 points if you ever boxed with Hemingway.