Personal Responsibility in Short Supply

By Joe Sinagra | The Save Jersey Blog

Reagan at Statue of LibertyWhen did it become everyone else’s fault and whatever happened to personal responsibility?

Ronald Reagan had said “[w]e must reject the idea that every time a law’s broken, society is guilty rather than the lawbreaker. It is time to restore the American precept that each individual is accountable for his actions.”

If it isn’t “I had a poor upbringing,” it is always “I lived in a bad neighborhood,” “my father left when I was two,” “I dropped out of school,” or “I couldn’t get a job . . .  just one excuse after another. Does anyone ever look in the mirror to see where the real problem lays?

People need to embrace the fact that they and they alone are responsible for their life and the path they choose in life.

How is it that those who chose to take a life of crime believe nothing is their fault? No matter how hard you try to blame others for the events that transpire in your life, each event is the direct result of choices made and continue to make.

How long does one blame their parents, their schooling, and society?

Have we raised a generation of adults who feel that everything that happens to them is because of something someone else did and there has to be a victim to pay for those mistakes?

There is no excuse period; it does not give a human being the right to take from another that which is not theirs regardless of what the circumstances are. It doesn’t matter that you had no father, you didn’t want to learn in school, you came from a poor neighborhood how does that justify killing someone?

I cannot feel sorry for anyone who chooses to rob, steal or kill from hardworking families or individuals. It doesn’t matter whether that life is black, white or Hispanic, there good people who are doing their best to live a decent life.

Stealing a life from a family, individual or group because of low self-esteem, poor upbringing is never society’s fault. Society didn’t let you down; you let yourself down because that was the easier path.

No one owes another anything except kindness, and if someone is willing to extend that kindness to you consider yourself lucky; you did something to earn it. You don’t deserve to take it.

3 thoughts on “Personal Responsibility in Short Supply

  1. There is much to agree when we talk of people taking personal responsibility, but if the actual infrastructure of society hinders the individual and creates a basic uneven playing field, does more responsibility lie in society? Should there not be a balance of rights and responsibility?.

    Your statement “No one owes another anything except kindness,” is what I find problematical and most telling, Our pets, animals we should show kindness, people, on the other and we should show “respect”. “Respect they neighbor” a Commandment … there is a difference and the spirit and tone of your words seem to reflect it!

  2. Don’t remember that commandment. But respect is earned, I believe. Society will always have an “uneven” playing field. That is just its nature. I saw a statement on FB. Don’t know who it originated with, but thought it was most powerful

    “We are all guaranteed equal opportunities; we are not all guaranteed equal outcomes”. That is where the element of personal responsibility comes in….at outcomes.

  3. Touche! “Respect is earned” I have probably been saying that longer than you have…

    Let me reframe… If one believes in a “basic” respect to all people on a neutral basis… as in the words of Jefferson … and the basic tenet of Judeo-Christian religion… where mankind has this responsibility over his/her realm as to differentiate from the “beasts of the field” the lower animals, we all have these basic inalienable rights. Kind of the “Golden Rule” Do unto others as you would want them to do unto, rather than a proactive “Do unto others before they do it to you!”

    Now with these rights we have, there is a corresponding responsibility… that is where the majority of folks fall short … and in doing so fall short in the “respect” department.

    But you brought up the equal opportunity … which in a perfect world we all should have. Nobody expects an equal outcome, we all have different abilities, our timing is different and we all have different positions on the starting blocks. The question is should society, should organized government, and institutions whether private or public put barriers, roadblocks to stymie the opportunity of those starting in the rear?

    The 10 Commandments should be easy to remember and keep. it’s not like the 613 Commandments that observant Jews are required to keep … You should take another look at them!

    Merry Christmas!

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