Entitlement – The Slow Erosion of Morality

Entitlement has been discussed when talking about younger generations, as in being entitled to something without working for it.  But entitlement entails much more, and just because you work hard doesn’t mean you’re any more or less entitled.   What happens when the highest office in America continues to behave entitled?  By most accounts I haven’t been phased by Trump’s behavior because it’s been expected, however, what concerns, appalls, and scares me is the lack of accountability or denouncement of his behavior or rhetoric by Congress or the Department of Justice.  Where is the integrity?  Should I be surprised? No.  Congress is happy to enable and co-sign this madness just so they can squeeze whatever reforms and laws into existence.  There is no better diversion than chaos.  There has been no checks and balances, until recently.  People may have continued their validation of electing Trump by stating that, “Well, it doesn’t really matter who the President is or what he does.”  But it does and it’s disheartening and appalling on so many levels.

This is Entitlement at its finest and clearest.  I’m not talking about entitlement to unalienable truths as stated in the Constitution, such as Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness. This entitlement comes from a place of empowerment.  I am talking about entitlement that takes power from others, walks on, and abuses another for the gratification of your own desires and wants regardless of the impact to another.  Entitlement is self-serving, taking what you want, when you want and from whom you choose simply because you think, believe and feel you have a right to do so.  Like most behavior, Entitlement is learned and entitlement is not always connected to privilege.  A broke thief can steal your money just as easily as a wealthy thief, and a poor person can take your life just as easily as a wealthy person.   Entitlement crosses all demographics, genders, socio-economic levels, cultures, and colors etc.  We all feel entitled to some degree, some more than others.   `Entitlement is created and flourishes because there are no boundaries and no accountability.  When you are entitled, then you won’t know, care or respect boundaries.  Boundaries are meant to be crossed because they don’t really apply to you, at least that’s the belief of ‘being above it all,’  the hallmark of a narcissist.

Entitlement is learned and created.  For example, a parent buys their child a toy every time they go to the store.  The parent does this to silence the child so the parent can have a ‘smoother’ or quicker experience shopping.  Only thing is, the child has learned that when he/she goes to the store, he/she will get another toy.  The problem becomes when the parent sets a boundary, the child throws a tantrum and the parent, in a rush to calm the child, acquiesces to their child’s desires. The child knows what he/she needs to do to get what they want.  Fast forward to teenage years, and let’s say the teen wants a car but not any car will do.  The parent wanting to please their child (for whatever reason, validation, outside image etc) buys their teen a muscle car, BMW or Mercedes.  This isn’t a problem within itself, unless the message that the teen gets is that “I can get/have anything I want” and also where does the teen go next?  What is the next level of satisfaction?  This is how entitlement is learned.  Entitlement can also be created even if you didn’t have experiences as a child.  Celebrities, politicians, athletes, lawyers etc can become entitled based on their position, performance and power within society.  These individuals may have worked extremely hard to attain their success and status.  This hard work can also be justification for their entitlement as in, “I deserve xyz because I’ve sacrificed so much or worked so hard.”  The problem with this statement suggests that anyone else with less financial success and status doesn’t work hard.   Also, no one can deny that certain doors and experiences open up to these individuals and over time they become used to preferential treatment and begin to expect it, regardless of their behavior or status.  For example, an individual that gets probation for a crime (theft, assault, drug use) that others would be imprisoned for.   For entitlement to flourish, it must be enabled. Congress is enabling. DOJ is enabling. Citizens are enabling.  Enabling says, “It’s ok. You keep behaving this way, and I’ll keep making excuses and defending you and your behavior.  Business as usual’

Why is entitlement so important?  A lack of boundaries, limits and being held accountable tells the Entitled that they literally can do anything and get away with it, that they are untouchable and above the law.  Entitlement means that nothing is ever enough and can set someone up to be a never-satisfied pit of wanting, having and taking. Without accountability, entitlement slowly erodes your moral compass and values. Entitlement doesn’t have integrity.  We can see this now, more in our country and society.

Here’s the trickle down effect of entitlement from a mass psychology perspective.

When the highest office in the USA employs a man who is entitled, it reverberates through all of society.  Trump stated before being elected: “when you’re a star [women] they let you do it, you can do anything … grab them by the pu$$y,” and “I could shoot somebody and not lose voters.’  He told us just how entitled he was and felt.  As it has trickled down, you can see the entitlement in the people and industries that are important to or at a minimum represent the president and his congress.  Businesses such as the Airlines injuring and dragging passengers off the plane; law enforcement harassing, arresting and killing individuals just because with little to no accountability; public servants (government officials) assaulting reporters and hate crimes being lobbed across the country.  Just today, a man who harassed two women on a train in Portland with ‘go back to your country,’ stabbed and killed two men that intervened.  This man felt entitled to harass these women and take the lives of two people in the process.  Click here  There is no empathy, shame or remorse in any of these behaviors which is the height of entitlement.

What is appalling and disheartening about all of this, is that there is no accountability. Not from Congress who is supposed to be the checks and balances. There is no denouncing of any of this behavior and especially these awful hate crimes from the highest office in the land.  There is no denouncing from the Department of Justice.  When will it be enough for the presidency, his administration and congress to denounce these behaviors and say and mean “Enough is enough, this is not who we are as a people, as a nation.”?

This entitlement needs to stop for the health and well-being of this country or this cancer will continue to spread throughout our  society.   This entitlement needs to stop lest we all become morally bankrupt in the process.