English 167 3rd Paper - Eric Dobson Section 324 Avoidance...

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Eric Dobson 12/10/2006 Section 324 Avoidance and Denial in CommComm In CommComm , George Saunders portrays how human beings deceive and distract themselves in order to escape addressing necessary changes – even when these changes are inevitable – and that only through giving into the forward progression that is inherent in human nature can satisfaction and resolution be found. Throughout the story, the characters and the society that they are a part of create numerous mechanisms that allow them to bury problems or put off changes that they acknowledge will need to be confronted in the future because they fear the unknown consequences of these changes. These mechanisms are evident on both the personal and social level, evident universally within human nature. PIDS is a principle example of avoiding addressing necessary change on a social level. As soon as Disasters is notified of a problem on the base, they contact CommComm so that they may take care of the situation. The fact that they wish to avoid an immediate change is already evident, as it would seem that the sole point of Disasters is to recognize that there is a problem and then send this problem somewhere else to be PIDSed. Once the problem arrives at CommComm it is not addressed, but rather sheltered or put away by the systematic and calculated PIDS solution. The principle approach of PIDS is to “admit, concede, explain, and pledge. (5)” The observation here is that there is no change implied, just recognition that a problem exists and a promise that a solution is in order. Moreover, the pledge that the narrator makes during his PIDS is not a final solution that will end the killing of beavers, just that they are “considering
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transplanting the beaver population. (1)” Not only are they only considering this solution, but they merely want to “transplant” the problem to another location. This PIDS is not the first evasive quasi-solution to an imminent problem. The narrator reveals that he has “PIDSed sexual-harassment cases, a cracked hazardous-waste incinerator, half a dozen jet-fuel spills” and several other cases. It becomes evident then that using PIDS to address a problem – or more exactly to not directly address it at all – has been a long term practice, that this brushing aside of necessary changes is something that has permeated society for some time now. In lieu of pursuing the change that has already been
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