I heard the other day that the next scheduled install fest (where school of computing students can bring their PCs along to the school of computing of an evening and have Linux installed on their systems and find out more about the operating system from those who use it every day) was going to be cancelled due to health and safety reasons.
This made me furious and I’m going to tell you why. Our whole lives are seemingly decided by authority, not for the purposes of law enforcement, national security or public health but because we “might cause ourselves harm”. My point is a very simple one, shouldn’t that kind of decision be up to us? If I put my fingers in a university plug socket and get a shock is it the university’s fault for having plug sockets? Of course not, its mine, for being a prat and sticking my fingers in there in the first place. This means that I should be allowed to use plug sockets because its my fault if anything bad happens.
Why then do we have rules that prevent us from doing something as simple as plugging in an electrical device with the reason cited that the organisation responsible for the existance of the plug socket is held reposnsible for anything that happens to me while using it?
I feel like we have been living in a nanny state for too long. Stupid health and safety rules need to be abolised as do the laws about organisational and individual responsibility to others that cause those rules to have a reason for exising. Whats wrong with us? Can’t we use our own brains anymore? The answer is yes, we can, its just someone is telling us we can’t. Its time for them to be given a kick out the door – permanently.