Friday, July 8, 2011

The St. Nora Lake Rope Swing

For more years than I can remember, there has been a rope swing on the northeast shore of St Nora Lake in Haliburton County. Parents have taken kids there by boat for an hour of fun and relief from the summer heat.
The kids held the rope, ran down an earthy slope, swung out over the water, then dropped into its cool depths. Sort of like a Norman Rockwell painting. Very little in North American society now is the way Norman Rockwell painted it. Things aren’t simple anymore, often because of how we have allowed government and the legal system to sprawl uncontrolled.
Where the Rope Swing Used to Be

The talk on our lake is that the county government cut the rope swing, and a tree or branches supporting it. The branches were dumped into the lake where the kids used to jump and swim.
The reasoning, some lake folks say, is that the county has created a pay-for-use campsite near the swing and took the swing down because campers might use it and get hurt. Then, of course, the county might be sued.
You want to scream at the bureaucrats behind this. But we should be screaming at ourselves. We are the ones who have created a system in which all forms of government increasingly control more and more aspects of our lives.
The root of all this is the soft and cuddly legal system we have developed. Hit a pothole with your car, sue the city for a new tire and a sore neck. You are guaranteed some money because it’s easier for the city to pay than have its expensive legal staff fight it.
And, we wonder why our kids are inside playing electronic games or watching the video screen.

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