Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Caylee's Law and the Specter of Civil Breakdown

Link
The calls for lawmakers to "do something" in the wake of the Casey Anthony "not guilty" verdict shows the limits of our impersonal age. Lacking confidence in the remnants of the social norms (not legalisms) upon which those kinship cultures were based, we turn now to the law to instruct fellow citizens how to behave with their children. The passage of such laws, far from indicating a triumph of our greater civility, reveals its unceasing attenuation and even breakdown. Our anxieties will only be stoked, not relieved, and each "solution" will only exacerbate the root causes of our deeper alienation.