Cause and Effect

by Byron on December 1, 2012

Dear Decker,

You have, as most babies have, an issue with spitting up.  Your issue is no worse than others, but it’s an issue nonetheless.  Dr. Goldstein thinks we might need to do something about it next time we see him.  But it will be what it will be.

What causes your spit up?  It could be your immature digestive track; it could be the way we position you after you eat; it could be your muscle keeping your stomach closed isn’t sufficiently developed; it could be Mom’s diet; it could be an allergy; it could be any number of things.

But you don’t spit up because you are a baby.  People like to say something happens because … of some broad generalization.  People do this because they don’t know the answer and they don’t deem it important enough to think it through.  Sometimes it matters and sometimes it doesn’t.  Plenty of people have said you simply throw up because you are a baby.  Truthfully, this issue might not be important enough to think through over and over.  By the time we figure it out, the spit up will probably have resolved itself anyway.

But sometimes it matters a lot.  Why something happens – the cause and effect – is largely what society is about.  The more we know about what makes certain events occur, the more we will be prepared to deal with the future.  Does eating Blueberries on Thursdays prevent cancer?

Determining cause and effect is similar to learning from the experiences of others.  It’s what makes the Internet such a game changing innovation.  I can’t tell you how many times Mom and I have gone to the Internet to get a quick answer to a question we had about you.

Our ability to record things will be vital for determining cause and effect.  The recorded life is a relatively new concept around the time of your birth.  I have a feeling by the time you go to college (or by the time you continue your education after high school), the recorded life will be commonplace.  We will be measuring everything all the time.  Why?  Mostly to determine cause and effect.

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