Harbinger of Social Dysfunction

James Howard Kunstler recently posted a warning about a serious threat to American society.  Try to guess.

It isn’t one of the usual dangers he beats on – not sprawl, or oil, not your Chevy.

No, the latest JHK “harbinger of social dysfunction” is… tattoos.  I wish I were kidding you.  I wish he were kidding us, especially because I actually kind of like the guy – he appeals to my inner Jane Jacobs.  But after reading this:

The activity taking place here, however, is a symptom of the growing barbarism in American life. Tattooing has traditionally been a marginal activity among civilized people, the calling card of cannibals, sailors, and whores. The appropriate place for it is on the margins, in the back alleys, the skid rows. The mainstreaming of tattoos (on main street) is a harbinger of social dysfunction.

… it’s hard to take him quite as seriously, especially when you consider everybody everything else that was kept on the margins back then.

He is just joking, right?


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