Dicta about "open and obvious" that eliminates a property owner's duty
In Cooper v. MGM Grand, the Plaintiff sued over a slip and fall at the entry way to a casino. Her case was not dismissed by the trial court, even though she apparently had to rely upon hearsay comments by bystanders to prove the cause of her fall. In reversing the trial court and dismissing her claim in reliance on the "open and obvious" defense, the Court quoted dicta from an earlier case: "In Michigan it is the overriding public policy to encourage people to take reasonable care for their own safety and watch where they are walking." What the Court did not explain is the ultimate impact of this "over-riding policy" dicta: It is the over-riding public policy of the judicial activists appointed by Governor Engler that property owners should owe no duty to make their premises safe, and the over-riding policy of these Justices that the cost of personal injuries should be borne solely by the victim, and not shared by other negligent parties. We cannot disagree more vehemently with the wisdom of this policy. No public policy is reasonable or supportable if it discourages commercial property owners, in particular, from making their buildings safe.