The counselor told the student that he had made the choice to join the National Guard and now had to “take responsibility” for the loss of his leg.
What do you want to bet that earlier on, a similarly trained counselor told the student it was his patriotic duty to join the National Guard so as to “take responsibility” for the support of his mother, and for his future education?
Tolstoy’s muzhiks might well have been cheerful about these things and not needed admonishment. But somehow I do not think Tolstoy wrote about such situations so as to call them exemplary.
I really object to all the rhetoric about “choices” that is bandied about today. I find it sadistic. “You made a decision I did not have to, nyah nyah nyah nyah nyah.” “You were uninformed and made a mistake. Nyah nyah nyah nyah nyah.”