When did we become a society with such a sense of self-entitlement?
I hear statements like, “I’m offended!” or “I feel threatened!” uttered almost everywhere I go nowadays.
And basic manners are becoming so rare that people often comment on how polite I am.
Unfortunately, in today’s me-centered society, someone with basic civility and manners is often seen as a doormat.
We live in a society where people are genuinely surprised if someone holds a door open for them or lets them into their lane during a traffic jam or simply says please or thank you.
Come on, we as a society can do better.
Since when did our lot in life earn us the right to think we’re better than other people, or too good to interact with certain people that we deem below us?
We don’t take our money, home, car, or job title to the grave with us. What remains of us after we die is people’s memories and impressions of us in regards to our morality, and how we treated others.
People nowadays think that others are impressed with our haughty attitude or what materialistic possessions we have.
Yet anyone can accumulate tons of possessions while going in debt. How is that impressive?
Same goes for those who hold impressive job titles. While I respect those that are experts in a certain trade or field of study or expertise, are you one of the people who lets a door slam on the person behind you, or can’t be trusted to simply keep promises you make?
Why do people lacking basic civility and integrity think they’re more entitled than the rest of society?
“But I’m offended!” Who cares? What makes your wishes or desires more important than anyone else’s?
I’m shocked how often people will call up complete strangers at businesses, or scream at someone they don’t know in public because they think they weren’t treated right.
Maybe it’s because I spent over a half a decade in the United States Army, where if you can’t take criticism or if you expect to always get your way, then you won’t last long.
Or maybe it’s because I have two teenage children — though I doubt that’s it, because I’ve never heard my kids scream about being offended.
I feel like I’m baby sitting complete strangers when I simply go to the grocery store.
Having had the “pleasure” of going to high school in a small town, I am very happy to have moved away from an area where a person’s last name doesn’t determine their importance in society more than how they behave.
That is, until I moved to Korea for a year and then came back to this area and realized that everyone had morphed into overgrown children.
That’s when I realized that I can rarely go to the grocery store without hearing someone complain to a cashier or store employee about something trivial. And it’s becoming embarrassingly common to hear someone loudly berating a waitress at a restaurant.
People sound like 5-year-olds. “I want this!” “I want that!” “My feelings are hurt!”
I feel like telling people to go take a nap or a time-out until they can turn their frown upside down and adjust their attitude.
So let’s be more self-aware and humble in our daily social interactions. And realize that we all laugh, cry and put one pants leg on at a time just like everyone else. Not one of us is “better” or more entitled than the other.
Jacqueline Dowland is editor of the Copperas Cove Herald. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org or 254-501-7464.
Jacqueline Dowland is editor of the Copperas Cove Herald.Contact her at email@example.com or 254-501-7464.