On a daily basis, I find myself reminded of the fact, that as a society, we feel that we are entitled to certain things, and in some extreme cases, everything. I work two jobs on different ends of the financial spectrum. I work in a homeless shelter and a private school. People in both arenas feel that they are entitled , money or not. The young people that attend the private school (and most of the faculty and administration) have led lives that for the most part are not lacking in material things. I have seen waste and lack of respect for things that cost a great deal of money that I have literally felt that I want to vomit. One incident that stuck in my brain was a young lady who was video chatting with her mother and was in a heated argument with her. At one point in the conversation, the young lady screamed, slammed down the lid on her expensive laptop which resulted in her shattering the screen on her computer. Literally, 2 minutes later, she was on the cellphone talking to the mother she was extremely rude to, crying about her laptop. Sure enough, mom was going to make arrangements to replace the laptop as soon as she got off the phone. I could have screamed.
There are millions of children starving and without decent drinking water in the world and I see an astronomical waste of food and water on a daily basis. Right now it is prom season, and the money being spent on just prom apparel, let alone anything else, would support a child in a developing country for a long time. I don't begrudge young people the fun of prom, it is the excess or "over the top" mentality that seems to prevade that I object to. I know that I have become a minimialist, and that I can't inflict my views on others, but come on people. What do we really need? Make a list of your must haves and then think about the "things" that are on it. How much time and energy do you have to invest to protect these "things."
On the other hand, those who are stuck in poverty can also have a feeling of entitlement. It becomes a state of mind. I have demonstrated that I can't take care of or take responsibility for myself, so you need to take care of me. I can't make the phone calls I need to make. Heck, I can't even sit down once a week and talk to my caseworker. I have a deadend job but make no effort to get a better one or a second one. I just wring my hands and say "woe is me." Oft times I make the lives of those around me miserable by all my complaining. I do have a car, but I hate communal living, so I will give everyone who is trying to help me a hard time. Frankly, you are getting a roof over your head and food to eat for nothing, what is your problem? Oh wait a minute, you don't have internet , access to a computer, a tv in your room. You are expected to do a daily household chore. Life has dealt you some bumps in the road. We all get thrown for a loop now and then, but if we wallow in it for long, then we find it harder and harder to get up and get moving again.
Basically, we are entitled to nothing. Life is about what we can give, not about what we can take. We are all guilty of the entitlement game, myself included. But the sooner that we realize we are entitled to nothing, the sooner we can be grateful for all the things we do have.