JAN 14: Why aren't we like rats in a cage?
Dr. John B. Calhoun discovered that when rats become overcrowded, their behavior becomes unhealthy and dangerous, and they start to suffer and die.
We humans live in a really overcrowded world, too, but although there are plenty of examples of bad behavior and human suffering, many communities are essentially healthy and harmonious. Researchers who have continued Calhoun’s work have argued that humans have better coping abilities than rats, so we don’t have to fall into the “behavioral sink”. We can set up all sorts of social, political, and economic systems to help us live together (relatively) peacefully.
Recently, our "Concepts of Community" class considered several such institutions/systems in Burlington, Vermont. Our thoughts are posted here. What systems work well in your home town/city/country?
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