Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Culture of Un-Responsibility

You read that right. Instead of using "irresponsibility" I am choosing to use the term "un-responsibility." "Irresponsible" indicates someone is not qualified for a particular task indicating maturity level, such as feeding a pet or taking care of something on a regular basis.

I am drafting the word "Un-Responsible" into the dictionary. It indicates the refusal to accept responsibility for one's self. The self includes a person's words, behavior, or other actions. Being "un-responsible," to me, is when the excuses, decrees of entitlement, and blame start.

There are a few places where un-responsibility seems to be more apparent than at a grocery store or a workplace (mine, in particular, it seems just because I deal with people who somewhere 'got caught' doing something illegal or dangerous).

Take for instance, my experience in the Wal-Mart parking lot. There was a cigarette wielding pregnant woman carrying another two year old (alias "Awesome Mom") who shoved her cart near Cart-man. Cart-man chased Awesome Mom's cart in order to prevent it from damaging surrounding cars, while the companion (alias "Baby Daddy") began backing the car out. Baby Daddy hit Cart-man hard enough to knock him down, then began screaming at cart-man for not moving out of the way fast enough. Cart-man, at this point, was crab-crawling as fast as he could away from the car. Awesome Mom was enraged at the hold up and added her own two cents about Cart-man slowing down their leaving processes (nevermind they had just hit him with their car because of her refusing to return the cart in the proper place!).

I have found this culture is not only limited to my cohort group or the current youth. I have bruises on my legs from grocery carts shoved into me by the quaintest and cutest little old ladies at the store who told me I should have heard them wheeling up and moved (?!?!). And what about the parent that told me it was not her fault she shook her baby... after all, she had a bad childhood. And there's the child who tells me it was not his fault he smeared poop all over the walls after going to the bathroom... I upset him. And what about the people who flip me off and honk and scream until the veins pop out in their foreheads during my morning commute... after all, I am going the speed limit and driving cautiously.

Let's not forget one of the beginning moments of this attitude (I think the wisest of you may know where I am going with this): A woman recieves a cup of coffee she is warned is hot. She then places the coffee between her legs and continues to drive a car. After receiving burns she decided to sue McDonald's for their irresponsibility. Now, while this may have been a turning point in un-responsibility, what few people know is that in the 80's there was a law passed by the leaders of this great nation saying that any liquid passing through a window must be placed in a bag first. A bag. A lack of bag and an obscure law is what allowed this woman to place blame on someone else for her idiotic actions.

It absolutely baffles and astounds me. When did we shift from a society of overcoming obstacles and circumstance to whining victims who refuse to take responsibility for themselves and willingly remain victims??? If someone figures it out, please let me know... I'm beginning to lose hope quickly of where it turned and if we can reverse it...

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