“Everyone is entitled to his own opinion, but not his own facts.”
-Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan
Are any of us really entitled to anything? Is there a sense of entitlement in society, in Gen Y particularly? That was the topic of a lively Tweet Chat called #GenYchat hosted by Chanelle Schneider (@WriterChanelle).
Each generation is labeled, categorized and generalized into some kind of stereotype and the lazy, rude, privileged labels crop up with the passing of each generational baton. The engaged, active and unlazy #GenYchat group contradicted those labels rather nicely. I have, however, seen a large range in the youth (I feel so old writing that) that I’ve come in contact with. I’ve taught at a college and spoken to college classes and, like anywhere there were some who were engaged, looking for answers, participating in the conversation and there were those who were not.
The chat turned to the non-generational issue with entitlement and entitlements in general – two words with a negative connotation. So what do you think of when you hear entitlement?
There is a positive side to entitlement and Jess’s answer made me think of one very important example.
The United States Declaration of Independence spells out the founder’s belief that we have a right, are entitled, to what Jennie points out in her answer:
Entitlement becomes a problem when anyone feels they should get some benefit without justification or working for that benefit. As Justin points out below:
The work required for the entitlements of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, in my opinion, is being an active member of society and that includes contributing by working and through – I know you hate this word – taxes. The real problem is when you don’t agree with how those taxes are being spent especially when you feel some people are getting a free ride. That brings us back to the word “lazy” in relation to entitlement as if Gen Y is entitled to high paying jobs without having first paid their dues. This is a charge that has been leveled at other generations as well, including mine, Gen X. As Dillon and Samuel point out, the answer is the same as for previous generations:
What was the outcome of this discussion? What are we entitled to? Jess says:
I loved the addition of “and fail if I can’t make it” that is all about personal responsibility and about taking risk, asking what next. Just as the ultimate goal of what next is personal happiness, MeeoMiia believes and Charrise agrees that happiness is the only thing we’re truly entitled to.
What are your thoughts on entitlement? Share them on twitter using the hashtag #GenYchat or leave your comments below.
Posted in General and tagged entitled, entitlement, generations by AJ with 2 comments.