I am amazed and disheartened by the prevailing attitude these days. It seems everyone thinks they are entitled to everything. People believe that because they exist then “someone” owes them food, shelter, clothing, cars, telephones, jewelry, gadgets, etcetera. The more, as a society, we have, the more we want. We look around at what other people have and think we should have what they have. Never mind that the other person worked or made what they have with their own hands (no one gave it to them). Then it’s about opportunities. The irrational believe that because someone else has something that we don’t then they MUST have had a better opportunity than we had. Perhaps some people make better use of the opportunities they have. Maybe some people work harder than others. Maybe some people are actually more intelligent than others. Certainly many do have better opportunities and are born into more advantages. If they are then that is their good luck and has nothing to do with us. None of us are entitled to anything. We are born, we live, and we die–end of story. Things are not equal. People are not promised anything. If we were more thankful for what we do have we would not be so concerned with what others have. Each of use are personally responsible for ourselves (as adults). We have become so entitled that even when we are given something free and clear (like a public education, public welfare, public food programs, public housing, public fire protection, public roads, public law enforcement, pubic libraries, and so-on) we complain because those not using public welefare programs have a different home or way of life that they purchased themselves. Working people in the United States pay about 30% of their salary right off the top to fund public services (state and federal). In other words, they give 30% of their salary to the poor whether they want to or not (this is forced alms-giving). Then many also give 10% of their net salary to a charity of their choice (because their religion calls for this giving). That leaves them 60% to support themselves and their families. Are people supposed to feel guilty because they put themselves through college on student loans (that they had to pay back)? Are people supposed to feel bad when they ruin their health forever working 72 hours a week during college or working two jobs to enable them to pay their own bills? One co-worker told of a regular scheduled free meal their church provides for the poor in the community only to have the recipients complain about the brand of soft drink served. Since when are soft drinks an entitlement? What happened to “thank you”? We do have a moral obligation to help the poor. We do not have a moral obligation to work ourselves into an early grave so others can exercise their option not to work at all. If the United States stopped all publicly funded services and programs for five years, people may actually appreciate what our country provides for citizens. There are places in the world that do not even have clean, safe drinking water. There are people who would be very thankful for a free soda regardless of the brand. This is just my opinion and I am sure others don’t feel this way. That’s another great thing about the United States–we are still allowed to have different opinions and to express them (for now).