The Safety Net

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I don’t care what your nationality is, 150 feet up perched above a room full of strangers and moments from the stunt you’ve practiced for, correction, would have practiced for, if you weren’t busy making out with your trapeze partner earlier –pretty sure you’d want a safety net.  Mistakes happen, why risk your well-being?  If only so you avoid months watching your blooper on Instagram, while you recover in traction.

And hit on the hospital staff, you sly player.

perch

Yet I hear debate in America of removing the “safety net,” (the metaphorical one; i.e. Medicare, unemployment, oxygen for the poor) and I’m perplexed.  Are you telling me this “safety net” needs a safety net?  I can’t stress this enough, our ancestors didn’t have safety nets, they went splat.  That’s why we built ’em. Like my father used to say, “ropes that slow your decent during free-fall don’t grow on trees!” and he was right.

Nets are better than no nets.

It’s the definition of progress.  First you go splat.  Then you go bounce.  Then you go build-an-economic-safety-net-so-if-you’re-let-go-from-the-circus-your-airborne-family-doesn’t-starve.   Plus, this new and improved “safety net” works for future generations as well.  You are, in fact, your brother (and sister’s) keeper, even if you don’t know them and they aren’t born yet.

Think of it like being in a casino.  You may not know (or like) that pasty faced twerp next to you, but suppose their lottery terminal fell over, pinning them to the floor.  Wouldn’t you step away from your machine for only a moment (this baby’s hot!) to lift it off their sorry face, if it meant saving their life?

Better yet, what if you could donate a few tokens to someone walking by, and they’d lift it for you, so you did’t risk a hernia?   That’s what the safety net is (in possibly the dumbest way I can explain): an intermediary we pay to save lives, so we can go about our business.  Too often we’re enamored by the flashing lights.  We worked hard as a society to establish the “safety net,” and it requires our vigilance to maintain it and our efforts to grow.

Nets are better than no nets.