Okay, pretend you're in a world where you can never touch the man to the immediate left. Why? Because touching is bad. You can't slap him on the back, high-five him, or kiss him--God forbid.
Are we talking about a futuristic world in which touching is verboten? A place where laws have been created to prevent the conception of superpowerful beings who will rise in revolt of the oppression forced upon the poor indigenous populace? Sounds like a terrific idea for a story.
Unfortunately, this rule is already in place in the good old U S of A. In a middle school.
Yep. It started off with a principal declaring dodge ball to be too violent, and it was taken away from the physical education curriculum. Now, I was always a big fan of dodge ball. It hurt like hell to be slammed in the body with that rubber ball. But to be the final kid left standing? Like winning a freakin' Oscar for gym class.
But in today's world of political correctness and schmaltzy kindness, dodge ball has been stripped away. Yet, just taking a "violent" sport from class wasn't enough. The same principal then decided to enforce a no touching rule. What, you say? That's right. No touching. No high-fives, slaps on the back, hugs or kisses. Kids can't touch one another at all. Oh, and the concept of tag, you're it? Now they play "shadow tag," where to make someone "it," you have to step on his/her shadow.
Okay, waving the bullshit flag. In a desire to prevent injury, the principal is, in effect, removing from the students what it means to BE a child. No roughhousing, no normal social interaction. By not forcing children to obey rules and deal with one another in a proper manner, she's taking away their ability to reason right from wrong. The easy answer: the poor kids can't touch one another, period. But what happens when they're in the real world and someone touches them? Will they know how to respond to a slap on the back, or will they cry foul?
(Please forgive my liberty with the English language, but if some idiot can enforce "no touching" then I can create a word.) I'm so disgusted with the saccharine over-niceness pervading society. I'm not talking about common courtesies and pleasant manners. I'm talking about people who are afraid of every damned thing. If your kid doesn't have a bruise or two, he or she is not living. How can you enjoy the swings and playground without skinning a knee or smacking your shin once in a while? Will we soon stop running, just in case we trip? Or stop smiling in case we split a lip? Maybe if parents would parent, and teach their children how to behave around others, educators would stick to educating. Now, because some children go hog-wild at school, a stiff-lipped administrator has taken charge, and to everyone's detriment.
Can you imagine what no touching might translate into if that rule was passed as an institutional law through adulthood? No more touching=no more courtship=no more procreation. But who knows? It might increase sales for our books, since people would only be able to fantasize about sex without ever doing it.
To the principal of that poor, poor school, Gimme a break.