Thursday, January 31, 2013

Perpetuating A Sense Of Entitlement

The massive amount of misinformation that one finds online is appalling. That misinformation can lead to a lot of arguments and outright hostility simply because certain people believe it. As I read blogs and Twitter feeds, I am finding that it is largely the Conservatives that accept this misinformation and fail to listen to anything resembling facts. I don't care how you spin it, half truths presented as facts are still nothing more than lies.

I do find it amusing as all get out when I read about Conservatives in their 40's and 50's that want to go "back to the 60's" without a single clue about what life was really like back then. From a safe distance of 4 or 5 decades, lower taxes and fewer people living high on government safety nets looks real good. The truth is another thing, but they don't know that, they stay connected to the internet to get their information.

In the 60's one car garages were the norm. Families had no need for anything larger because one car was all that was needed to get Dad back and forth to work. I don't know how many women had driver's licenses because all my friends parents did their errands the same way my parents did. On Saturday, when Dad didn't have to work and was available to chauffeur Mom and kids around. Kids were dropped off at dance or music lessons while Mom did the weeks grocery shopping. Everyone was usually home by noon because there were weekly chores. Lawns needed mowing, bedrooms needed cleaning, etc. And elderly neighbors would pay to have their lawns mowed, leaves raked or their sidewalks shoveled in winter.

Parents provided a small allowance for entertainment and things we might decide we wanted. If something cost more than we had, it was up to us to EARN it by mowing lawns, shoveling snow or babysitting. We weren't raised to believe we were entitled to something simply because we wanted it.

Life wasn't convenient. It required hard work and skills. In the 60's people were judged not on how many technology toys they owned, or how many sports programs their kids were in after school,  but on how well they kept their homes or how industrious or helpful to others their children were.

Conservatives scream about this sense of entitlement people have today. Just what do you think created that? When you give someone something simply because they ask for it, what lesson are you teaching?

In the 60's if an adult said your child did something, they were believed and the boom was lowered so that behavior didn't continue. In the 60's parents read diaries and snooped in their child's bedrooms so that they could keep abreast of what the child might be up to behind their backs. If something was found that hadn't ought to have been there, the excuse that it wasn't the child's wasn't accepted.  "That's not my pack of cigarettes, that's so and so's." Answered by: "It was found in YOUR room, YOU are responsible." It wasn't a lack of trust, it was the understanding that behavior was influenced by situations and people other than themselves.

In the 60's families weren't democracies, they were benevolent dictatorships. He who paid the bills made the rules and woe betide anyone who didn't follow those rules.

In the 60's people volunteered their labors to help others. Back then kids wanting to help others didn't make the news because they were the norm, not the exception.

I was raised that way and guided my step-children in that direction when they were residing in my home. They are raising their children that way as well. None of us feel entitled to anything that our labors can't provide and are grateful for anything we receive over and above that. None of us use food stamps or apply for Heap. Hub and I did apply for assistance in paying his hospital bill because we no longer make enough to have paid it on our own. I am eternally grateful that we received as much as we did, and we are paying the balance in monthly installments. Without complaints and without the feeling that we were entitled to more than we received.

The more you give some people, the more they feel they're entitled to. That is part of our problem even with those who make more than enough money to meet their needs. They feel entitled to more. We saw that attitude during the last election cycle. Simply cutting social programs isn't going to change anything. The problem isn't the program, it's the sense of entitlement that we built in to our society and until we change that, we will not ever get back to what made us a great society.

Life isn't about me and what I want, it's about what we've earned by our own efforts. It's about raising responsible citizens who are willing to work together towards common goals that benefit all. Instead we have people resorting to guns and killing innocent people because they're angry that they haven't been "given" everything they want. And how did they arrive at the idea that life worked like that? We raised them to blame their misfortune on everything else instead of accepting their own responsibility for their plight and doing something constructive about it.

We can't legislate behavior, proper behavior must be taught. We no longer teach, we rant about what's wrong. We take sides based on misinformation and fight to bury the positive in a world of gloom and doom. Then we look to legislation to change what we ourselves could change by altering our own behavior.


  1. In Kansas we are moving fast to end HIV testing, aid to rural elderly, disabled, the state ethics board, reduce the number of classrooms and cut the amount spent, do away with income and inheritance tax replace it with sales tax except not on airplanes and houses, cut unions ability to bargain and organize, cut restaurant inspections, make it illegal to photograph farms and puppy mills. WHo pushes for this? The rich and the top end of the middle class. Why? They are entitled. Entitled to keep everything they make and resent paying taxes for the common good, in thier eyes all who fall ill, get hurt, suffer crime or misfortune need to just toughen up and get a good job, thats all there is to it, don't ask me, I'm entitled to step over the fallen.

    1. Yup, it's the entitled trying to take bare existence away from our elderly, poor, disabled, and veterans. In my line of business, the clients I have who actually can count on their families to do everything they can for them are those with low income families. Professional people, upper middle class people simply ignore and in some cases complain about having to pay attention. Cracks me up to hear someone trying to deny anyone these programs telling me that their parent is "entitled" to MORE help than they're getting.