Entitlement culture will rule, and ruin, America unless we, you and I, act.
That is the subject of today’s 10 minute episode.
Let’s start with having fun with what some famous quotes would have looked like in today’s entitlement culture thinking:
“Ask not what your country can do for you; don’t just ask, you must demand that your country deliver all of your entitlements.” Here’s the original. “Ask not what your country can do for you. Ask what you can do for your county.” Democratic President John F. Kennedy set this standard in his 1961 inauguration speech. Poor Jack was mired in the age of patriotism and personal responsibility. Didn’t he know that all of that is passé, and that we are now entitled to harvest what was planted for us by those who practiced those outdated principles?
“Give me entitlements, or give me death.” Patrick Henry in saying, “Give me liberty or give me death,” apparently did not know how to either demand something for nothing, or call down punishment on those unwilling to meet that demand. Silly Pat took personal responsibility, taking it all on himself.
“I regret that I have but one entitlement to demand.” American patriot Nathan Hale’s last words before being hanged by the British for treason during the Revolution were, “I regret that I have but one life to give for my country.” This clearly shows that ol’ Nate missed the opportunity to declare himself a victim, compelling his executioners to feel shame and guilt sufficient to apologize and give him what he wanted.
“There is no way that socialism or other forms of massive government spending can ever run out of money for entitlement programs. Just print the money!” British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher said, “The problem with socialism is that eventually you run out of other people’s money.” Did Maggie forget about the government printing presses? And even if the conservative hand wringers are proved to be right, and massive spending and mounting debt are indeed deeply counterproductive and damaging, those supporting the spending and debt can easily just blame the “other side” for the damage. And the politicians and others supporting the spending will likely be dead or out of office when the bills come due–and will have lived quite well until then. The proof of the generational theft will be left to their, and our, children and grandchildren.
“Give all minorities, and all those deemed to be underprivileged, and all those who do not have the guaranteed results they deserve, a fish every day forever, establishing equity in perpetuity.” The original, “Give a man a fish, and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish, and you feed him for a lifetime,” is too much work, and is unfair to the man. First of all, you can’t teach fishing in person unless you, the man and the fish have all been vaccinated. Second, what if the man identifies as a non-fisherman? And any comments about long term giveaway programs leading to generational poverty mindsets are obviously racist.
Now let’s look at some specific examples of today’s entitlement thinking.
Immigration. People are entitled to come here if they wish. Save for the occasional criminal, they should all be allowed in, and eventually given amnesty, including the vote. Doesn’t that represent true equity far more than a secure border, even one with an open and welcoming but controlled gate? Illegals, those already here and those streaming in, are entitled to be Americans just like you and me.
Voting. People are entitled to exercise their right to vote with no inconvenience at all. Any obstacle, no matter how trivial, is blatant voter suppression. States like Georgia, and others, that allow weeks to vote, offer no-excuse absentee ballots, and make IDs available for free, are, well, obviously racist because minorities clearly cannot comply without experiencing some type of inconvenience. And just as clearly, references to voter responsibility and securing the integrity of the voting process are racist dog whistles.
All people have the right to, are entitled to, food, housing, clothing, healthcare, Internet, etc. And if you don’t buy the “people have the right to” argument, then we’ll just call all of it infrastructure and fund these entitlements that way.
Oh, and people are entitled to an education, including diplomas, and the jobs they want. Isn’t that so much more equitable than having to qualify for grade promotions, and work to earn a diploma? After all, standardized tests are racist. In fact, any test, measurement or observation of disparate results among the races is ipso facto racist. And affirmative action should not only get you an education and a job, but should get you into the school of your choice, and get you the job you want.
People are entitled to having their children taken care of by taxpayer-funded governments. That includes having public schools being completely responsible for their education, including meals before and during school hours. And housing, healthcare and clothing are school-related entitlements.
People encountering the police are entitled to put 100% of the responsibility for the encounter on the cops. If anything goes sideways, no responsibility of any kind belongs to the civilian. Any criticism or observation of errant behavior on the part of the civilian, in the past or during the interaction, clearly supports police brutality.
Now, finally, for some needed, loving wisdom. It is far more effective, and deeply more loving, to create policies and programs that initially encourage, and eventually require, people to learn how to succeed on their own, and to learn to provide for their families and others. Allow them the dignity that comes from providing for themselves, and the respect that comes from providing for others. And the sense of near immortality that comes from setting that example for future generations.
Did today’s episode stir up any new thoughts for you? If so, what might you be doing differently?
Tell me what you believe. I and many others want to know.
As always, whatever you do, do it in love. Without love, anything we do is empty. 1 Corinthians 16:1.
As we get ready to wrap up, please do respond in the episodes with comments or questions about this episode or anything that comes to mind, or connect with me on Twitter, @willluden, Facebook, facebook.com/will.luden, and LinkedIn, www.linkedin.com/in/willluden/. And you can subscribe on your favorite device through Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify and wherever you listen to podcasts.
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Will Luden, coming to you from 7,200’ in Colorado Springs.
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