If she find him not, To England send him, or confine him where Your wisdom best shall think.

So this is the plan now? Try and get Gertrude to round him into confessing his dark love feelings or “go to England” (AKA – execution) OR confinement. Where? The Danish dungeons? Claudius’ own private prison? Is there a Tower of Copenhagen like the Tower of London? And is confining someone who’s not really dangerous, just a little socially inappropriate really a good idea? I mean, sure, there are many inappropriate people I’d really rather not see around – but is it okay to confine them, just because they make me uncomfortable? I’m afraid not.

I’m in a café now where a very tiny young Asian woman wearing a histrionic Jesus smock hopped up on a stool and started singing and davening. (Is it still called davening when not done by Jews?) She sat there, rocking back and forth, singing, crying for about ten minutes, then hopped off her stool and walked away. This isn’t socially acceptable. It makes me uncomfortable. I was very glad to see her go. But should she be confined because she makes me uncomfortable? Nope.

And I guess that’s the Modern age, really – that’s one of the things we worked out over the years – a clearer sense of what we put up with and what we make space for. We’ve mostly figured out how to tolerate discomfort and each other without being total dicks.

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