my last post, and resulting comments got me thinking about our sue crazy society.  why does it seem like there is always someone hiding around the corner, waiting for an accident, so they can file a lawsuit?  have you ever noticed that?  and when is an accident just that, an accident?

when I was younger, my brother had a friend, I can’t remember his name.  at a ballgame, this boy’s mama made a comment to my mama about her kid almost getting hurt somewhere, and how she would have sued if he had indeed been hurt.  that little boy was never allowed at our house, per my parents, out of fear of his mother’s lust for compensation.

that was more than 20 years ago.  lawsuit fever has only gotten worse.

I read about a new jersey doctor who, in 2003, collided with an 11 year-old girl on rollerblades, while he was bicycling.   as a result of the accident, his collarbone was fractured and needed surgery a few months later after not healing completely.  now his mobility is limited, he can’t sleep on his right side, and can no longer enjoy swimming, biking and skiing.  his solution: sue the girl for $160,000 to cover the income he lost due to this injury.  it doesn’t matter that he earned  more than $1.5 million the year of the lawsuit…thankfully a jury found the girl innocent of negligence after 15 minutes of deliberation.

my son kris has always been a hands-on kid.  he touches everything.  one day when he was 5 or 6, we were in the grocery store.  they had taken out the little stands that you lay your checkbook on while you’re filling it out.  unfortunately, they didn’t cover the holes where the pole had been.  even more unfortunately, that young’un put his hand in the hole.

as soon as the conveyor belt started moving, he screamed, and yanked his hand out.  it was covered in blood, so the manager -who had heard the screams (and probably immediately thought “oh, oh, lawsuit) – hurried kris and I into the back, to the sink.  I held his hand under the water while he continued to scream, preventing me from seeing the damage.

at some point, an ambulance arrived to whisk us off to the hospital; mama arrived to take jessica home -sorry mother that I am, I totally forgot she was there.  she says the best part of that day for her was when the manager let her pick out a handful of candy, anything she wanted.

rich met us at the hospital, where we discovered that the fingernail was the only thing holding the tip of kris’ little ring finger on.  several stitches and lots of tears -mostly mine- later, he was none the worse for wear.  he’s always been able to shake off pain and injuries, that comes with lots of experience.

the grocery was so accomodating, calling to check on him, going out of their way to ask about him when we shopped.  the check stands reappeared later the day of the accident.  I can’t even remember now, how many people suggested I sue the store.  ‘if they hadn’t left that hole, he wouldn’t have been hurt.’  well, that’s a very good point, but lacking a key component: if he hadn’t stuck his little finger in that hole, he wouldn’t have been hurt.  as far as rich and I were concerned, it was just as much kristopher’s fault -and mine for not watching him closer- as it was the store’s.  why would I sue?

there is always some news clip on the radio about some stupid lawsuit, and I want to know, WHY?  when do we take responsibility for our own actions, and stop suing fast food restaurants because we’re getting fat?

and when do we uphold the definition of accident:

 ac – ci – dent   noun:

  1. an undesirable or unfortunate happening that occurs unintentionally and usually results in harm, injury, damage, or loss.
  2. any even that happens unexpectedly, without a deliberate plan or cause.