The Ice Bucket Challenge Is a Medical Disaster

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How many more must freeze before the madness ends? Photo: Charles Sykes/Bravo/NBCU Photo Bank

The ALS Association has raised millions and millions of dollars for scientific research by persuading Americans to record videos of themselves being doused in ice-cold water. The trend has gotten so far out of hand that Ethel Kennedy challenged President Obama to douse himself. Has nobody considered the dangers associated with exposing a president to hypothermic shock? Have we already forgotten what happened to William Henry Harrison?

Obama has wisely spared himself. Meanwhile, hundreds of thousands of well-meaning Americans press blindly ahead, perhaps unaware of two scientific facts relevant to the problem of lifting heavy water buckets over a person’s head: Water is slippery and heavy. Having unqualified people attempt to lift heavy, slippery things over their own heads or others’ will lead to lots of things like this:

Somebody is going to have to start a new charity to benefit victims of ice-bucket-related blunt-force head trauma.