Why we need tort reform in the U.S.

We live in a litigious society. I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again. Only in America can a woman order a hot cup of coffee, clumsily spill it on herself, and then turn around and sue the vendor for millions in damages and WIN! It’s ridiculous, and it needs to stop.
 
Such frivolous actions only detract from the real episodes when lawsuits are the only answer — to punish and send a message that the behavior cannot occur again. When we as a society allow the inane to occur, we begin to empty the action of any value and meaning. That helps no one in the long run.
 
You would think that our members of Congress would subscribe to the same principle. That they would eagerly rise and echo our claims as a people that “there ought to be a law” to prevent such actions.
 
And yet, the latest example of such frivolity is one perpetrated by a congressman himself — Rep. Dennis Kucinich (D-Ohio). It seems the fella bit into a sandwich in the congressional cafeteria and broke a tooth on an olive pit.
 
OK, how unfortunate. So maybe, just maybe, he complains to management and they work out a deal where the cafeteria covers the congressman’s dental bills. Even then, I’m scratching my head, because aren’t members of Congress supposed to have the best healthcare in the country? Do they really need help in getting proper healthcare?
 
But Kucinich doesn’t want just compensation, he wants damages — $150,000 worth. The olive apparently caused “serious and permanent injuries” as well as “loss of enjoyment.” There you have it, Americans. Enjoyment to an elected official is apparently worth six figures. Give me a break.
 
I guess I should be surprised by his actions, but I’m not. Kucinich is one of the most liberal members of the House. And yet, he has to know that his actions could lead to the loss of jobs for the workers in the cafeteria.
 
The $150,000 has to come from somewhere. And as much as the congressman will cry that the money will come from “Big Insurance Companies,” someone at the cafeteria vending company will still need to pay the bill. That means lost revenues, lost profits, and less in the till to dole to employees.
 
This is why we need tort reform in this country, folks. If elected policymakers think that even they can make a quick buck off the backs of America’s private sector, then we’re all in for a world of hurt …


Armstrong Williams is on Sirius/XM Power 169, 7-8 p.m. and 4-5 a.m., Monday through Friday. Become a fan on Facebook at www.facebook.com/arightside, and follow him on Twitter at www.twitter.com/arightside.