In late 2018, Netflix came out with a horror film called Bird Box. The film, which starred Sandra Bullock, Sarah Paulson, and John Malkovich, is about an invisible monster that made people hallucinate, and their hallucinations cause its victims to commit suicide. The hallucinations come after the victims see this invisible entity; so in order for the people to survive, they have to not see the monster. Hence, the blindfolds around the Bird Box characters. You can see why the movie spawned a lot of memes, and, as kids (and some adults) are wont to do, stunts and challenges.
Now what’s wrong about the Bird Box challenge? The challenge involves blindfolding yourself as you do daily activities. Now, it’s not very harmful when you, say, put your make-up on while blindfolded. Or eat ice cream while blindfolded. The danger comes when some people, especially teens, take the challenge to the extreme.
Youtube has been besieged by clips of teens and young adults doing dangerous stunts while blindfolded. This was spurred by social media influencers on Youtube doing the Bird Box challenge. It has gotten so out of hand that Netflix pleaded with their viewers to stop doing the challenge because it might endanger them and even potentially harm others. Even Youtube has posted stricter guidelines about what subscribers can or cannot post on the popular streaming site. It has outright banned videos that feature dangerous challenges and pranks that might endanger the people doing the stunt, and innocent bystanders.
Youtube videos of people walking into traffic and even driving while blindfolded flooded Youtube. Earlier this month, a 17 year old girl from Utah participated in the challenge by pulling her beanie over her eyes while driving. The teen ended up losing control of the car, driving into the opposite lane, hitting another car and a light pole. She had a 16 year old passenger with her when she pulled the stunt. Luckily no one was hurt.
However, just because this accident that was directly caused by the Bird Box challenge did not harm or kill anybody, it doesn’t mean that the challenge does not have the potential to hurt or kill people. It is dangerous enough to drive with both eyes open. If you hit someone while doing something as infantile and dangerous as the Bird Box challenge, the liability lies on you. You are legally responsible for any accidents caused by your actions. And had anyone died or been injured during this accident, the teen would have been legally responsible for it.
If anyone willingly participates in a dangerous challenge that would compromise their safety and the safety of those around them, any damage brought about by that challenge will have to be paid for by that person. So if your teen, thinking that it would be harmless to participate in something their friends are doing, explain to them that their actions have very real consequences. And that their safety and that of the people around them, should be their priority.
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