Saturday, July 18, 2009

Obfuscating Fairness

Canada's Supreme Court ruled that airlines must provide an extra seat for obese people on domestic flights. What about those clinically diagnosed with claustrophobia then? Might these people have just as valid a claim for an extra seat as obese people?

One might suggest only those obese through no fault of their own be eligible for this “perk”. Do claustrophobics anymore choose to be such? How would we determine whether it is through no fault of their own anyway? Only arbitrarily.

Furthermore, why should it matter whether it is their fault or not? If my appetite necessitates that I consume 2 entrees (if genetics had dealt me a 275 pound frame against my better wishes), then I must pay for 2 entrees! In the same way, if obese people require 2 seats, they should pay for 2 seats.

This seems unfair to many. But alas, life is unfair. The sooner one understands this, the more quickly this and other similar arguments become impotent.

The following analogy can shed further light on the absurdity of this argument:

If a person who has only ever aspired to be a brain surgeon just happens to be plain stupid (only because mom and dad, God bless'em, ain't too bright), should he be granted easy access into becoming a surgeon so as to avoid being unfair to him only because he is stupid through no fault of his own? I don't think I want this surgeon operating on anybody I care about.

Life is unfair. Get over it!

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