This blog is about the story of my family here in America. We arrived in the 1630s as Puritans, and became the common folk of the New World.

Congratulations! You survived!

If you are one of those people who enjoy the "Congratulations, you survived (insert era, or medical discovery, or safety invention here)", I gotta tell you, you make me cringe. And it has to do with the underlying message that you are sending, which is everybody today is wimpy as compared to your toughness, as you were able to survive.

The reason you don't hear the flip side of the "Congratulations, you survived" argument is the number of people who died. They have no voice. Sure, you survived before the common use of seat belts, before air bags, but many, many people didn't. Maybe you survived Polio (just how old are you?), or the many childhood illnesses that were once fatal, but many people didn't.

If your message is that people were tougher before the use of football helmets, your message is clear - you are an idiot. But there have been so many things invented that have increased the chance of survival that I can understand your confusion. And chances are that, in spite of your ignorance, you have benefitted from things you know nothing about, like the inspection of food and other "bureaucratic" meddling.

If you take a moment to consider how many wonderful things have been invented that make life better and safer, you will understand. Please feel free to say what you want, but please don't stand in the way.
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