Thursday, May 21, 2009

Litigiousness, Avoiding Risk and the Unpleasant Results

I am increasingly frightened by the avoidance of risk in our society. Though that article from The Atlantic is a fairly specific piece, it is indicative of the disappointing mood I see around me. It's a shame that we live in a society that has to devote so much time running people through sexual harassment training, where kids can't get into a simple fist fight, where I've seen the Stanford Band be hobbled over concerns that someone might be offended by a given field show, where I have never seen a fight in a bar. This is not the world I want to live in.

Admittedly, I'm fairly glad that we don't see things around here such as the music stores I saw in Europe back in 2001 where there would be a section labeled 'Black Music' containing everything from rap to Michael Jackson to jazz. Obviously there is something to be said for educating people in basic decorum. I don't want to see a world with institutionalized racism and gun fights, but we've taken it too far. We should not live in a world where we can expect to never be offended, where no one gets their nose bloody.

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