Limits of Safe Instruction

Posted: July 27, 2010 by Isaac Cross in Learn Something, Philosophy
A few days before posting this, I posted about a new way of doing needles that I had tried out. During the discussion of that (on another site), I was accosted by a group of pro-piercers who felt that it was inappropriate for me to teach less-than-sterile methods of teaching in my classes.
But the thing is, regardless of what may be the “safest” way to do something, do we have to accept that as the “correct” way of doing it? And furthermore, do we need to insist that people use it and prohibit the instruction of any other method?
The ‘nilla example is abstinence education. Some people believe that children should not be taught safer sex methods because it will encourage them to think about sex and therefore increase the chances of them having it. Others believe that it is best to empower them with knowledge and let them make their own choice.
In a similar way, there are some within our community that lash out at anyone who suggests that a choice to do something in a manner that is anything less than the “safest” way, even when the action itself is, by it’s nature, an unnecessary risk.
They are saying that it is an unacceptable choice to go from a .01% chance of something going wrong to a .02% chance. But not doing the piercing at all would reduce the risk to 0%. So isn’t the choice to do play piercing, in and of itself, an unnecessary risk? Why is that choice to go from 0 to 1 ok, but to go any farther is outrageous?
This is why I choose to live by RACK rather than SSC. I don’t like the subjectiveness of someone else deciding what is “Safe enough” for me and the people I play with. That’s our choice to make. It is up to us to figure out our own Risk Profiles.
So, I will continue to give people options. Because if they can’t afford the very best, safest way of doing things, I want them to know that there are still ways to be safe-ER, and teach them how. I trust people to make the best choices for themselves. My job is to provide information, not moral puritanism.

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