Tchaikovsky Sounds Funny: Shocking Update on Stanley Milgram Shock Study

Is this where I put in key words such as sex, lesbians, vampires, Christopher Lloyd and others things to which this blog do not pertain, but by putting them here, I may get hits from all the Christoper Lloyd lesbian vampire fans (and you know who you are)? This is the primarily humorous and occasionally rambling writings of Leon Tchaikovsky, humor writer. Enjoy.

Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Shocking Update on Stanley Milgram Shock Study

Long hidden details of Stanley Milgam’s controversial studies during the 1960s at Yale University have been discovered. Milgram experimented to see how far people would obey a person in an authority position even to the point that they know they are causing harm to another purpose. A purpose of the study was to seek an explanation on how holocausts can occur and why people can be convinced to commit atrocities by someone in authority. The study had volunteers commit what they thought were behaviors that were causing great harm and could possibly kill another. Unfortunately, since these were volunteers, the possible psychological scarring of the volunteers upon realizing they had been talked into harming and possibly killing another was considered beyond the scope of reasonable scientific inquiry. The study was widely condemned.

The study put volunteers at the control of a knob that would shock a person sitting in front of the volunteers. The knob included a warning that voltage above a certain level could result in the death of the subject. As a Yale University scientist wearing a white coat instructed the volunteer to shock the subject, the Yale scientist recorded how far the volunteer would go in shocking another person. The study found that many, even after the subject was screaming in pain, would continue raising the level of the shocks. Many also continued to increase the voltage past the stated danger level that could result in death. The study concluded that many people will accept the request of a person seemingly knowledgeable and in charge, here a Yale scientist wearing a white coat, in going forth in causing great pain to another person.

Fortunately, there really was no voltage, and the subject screaming in pain was acting as part of the experiment. Yet, the volunteers did not know that. No humans were harmed during this experiment.

Two files long thought destroyed have been found. The first is of a volunteer listed only as “George W.B.” His file reads “George applied the shocks most willingly, stating that he had a legal right as a Yale student to do so. He insisted that shocking or torturing another in protection of our nation or Yale was appropriate and that he needed no prior approval from another to so engage. Rather than wait and determine if the person had committed any act deserving shocks, he argued that we need to show strength and resolve. Volunteer laughed giddily which applying the shocks.”

The second file was of a volunteer listed only as “Hillary R.” Her file reads “Hillary, before receiving any instruction, read the voltage warning on the knob, declared that she recognized the subject to receive shocks as a cheating former boyfriend. Without any prior instruction on what to do, she turned the knob on full blast, left it there for several minutes, and then walked out and left.”


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