Friday, February 25, 2005

Sense of entitlement

You know what I hate? People who think the world owes them something just because they managed to squirm out of the birth canal and then proceeded to become potty-trained and able to feed and clothe themselves. However, included in that disdain is a strong reaction against the generalization that entitlement refers to just one age, race, color, sex, whatever classification is de rigeur. I just don't get why each generation has to think that they had it harder, or that times were simpler, or that somehow they were more innocent than the current crop of whipper-snappers nipping at their heels.

At the end of the day, there are certain stages and tasks that one must progress through in order to become an adult (Does anyone have a pretty version of this stuff? Here's a lesser ugly one, I guess: click here). Once upon a time, world wars or global conflicts would provide a sort of proving ground for our young adults and then they would come home and try to cobble some sense of normal. Believe me when I say I would rather find some other way for high school seniors and college grads to use their energies rather than going off to war. Here's one suggestion.

I don't know. Maybe it's because I work with students on a daily basis that I see how much things have not changed. Some might complain that kids nowadays are have a higher sense of self-esteem. But I am seeing an equally large number of students with a higher self-awareness. That can be a very heavy and oppressive burden. We mold these kids into images of ourselves. We ship them from this to that and expect nothing but the best. Best for whom?