Frivolity and Frivolous Lawsuits

The European Court of Human Rights. The noble syllables just roll off the tongue, and visions of brave people standing against genocide and oppression spring to mind. The title alone infuses the body with gravitas and dignity.

Dignity will be in short supply for a little while, though. It seems that a Russian lawyer is suing to his country’s TV networks over The Simpsons, an animated comedy show from the United States. He claims that the show caused “moral harm” to his family. He hopes that the court will force the networks to only air the program during time slots where children are less likely to see it, and he wants some money for damages. (The damage may be done, but it looks like some cash will help heal his family’s morals.)

Every court occasionally has to hear idiotic cases, and my position is not that this is an illustration of the futility of ECHR. Instead I think that this news is a very heartening sign. Some people have claimed that it is only a matter of time before Communism is reinstated in the former USSR, but this is proof that at least one Russian lawyer gets the Capitalistic concept that it’s okay to be seen as a fool as long as there’s some money it for you.

6 thoughts on “Frivolity and Frivolous Lawsuits”

  1. Prediction: The ECHR will become the prefered legal venue for airing any anti-American diatribe that comes down the road. (Calling all socialist Spanish procecutors and Belgian bureaucrats…)

  2. Who, in their right mind, would choose to watch the “Simpsons?” Personally, I’ve never understood the “charm,” allegedly, put forth by its creator. If anything, the program may well suggest a twisted futility and, thus, stupidity of the family environment within American society. Perhaps this Russian litigator perceives the program as a “capitalist phenomenon,” and deduces it to be a verifiable threat to the sanctity of his Russian, family values. Overall, if one looks at this lawsuit objectively, he does possess a good argument. Too, he’s requesting the network to reschedule the “comedy” to a later time. Not so unreasonable, in my opinion. Money damages sought, in this case, should be considered beside the point.

  3. I actually like the Simpsons. In many ways it is the most moralistic show on television.

    A typical Simpson’s plot runs like this: One of the family members does something selfish. Much wackiness ensues, usually to the detriment of another family member. The selfish-acting Simpson realizes that their choices has hurt the people they love and they then struggle to set things right.

    Homer in particular exist as a kind of anti-role model. Most of the problems in his life result from his rapid fire cycling through the cardinal sins. The joke with Homer is that he does everything one is not supposed to do. Even very young children get this. The know that whatever Homer does (especially in the first 10 minutes of an episode) they should probably do the opposite.

    Compared to most TV shows the Simpson’s is just one morality play after the next.

  4. While the Simpsons is sometimes funny, it is part of the avalanche of pernicious crap in our society that degrades parents, especially fathers, and I see no reason to have it in my house. However, I don’t elevate this to a general princople.

    The first thing that sprang into my mind when I read that was “cognitive dissonance“.


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