Teaching anyone to think that activity is the same as achievement or that participation is the same as progress is a sure fire way to have an entire country full of people that think they should be rewarded for existing.
You don’t get rewarded just for being a human being, I’m sorry. You can’t just show up for work, spend all day on the Internet, and think somehow you deserve a promotion. Showing up is not “half the battle”…it’s worth zero. Exactly zero.
If you play a game poorly – any game – you should lose, experience the feeling of losing, and then do something about it. You should practice, study, work harder, and get better. You should be humbled and ask questions. Losing should make you sharper. And if you aren’t motivated enough to do something about losing, then you should just accept your life as a “loser” and be okay with it – you have no right to request a free pass, recognition, or a mulligan because you “sort of tried”.
It’s not my job, a parent’s job, and especially not the government’s or taxpayers’ job to make you feel better for losing. It’s not our job to pretend your laziness or lack of priorities isn’t the reason you are where you are.
You know what happens when you do that? Most people will just choose to be “losers” because they get the same rewards as the winners for doing no work, putting in no sweat, and never having to pass the test.
And who can blame them? Much like water will automatically flow to the lowest point, so too will humans (or any animal) if they are rewarded for doing less. Are you telling me that if your boss offered you the same income for only 10 hours a week you wouldn’t take it? Please.
The worst part about empowering this participation trophy culture is that it literally has the opposite of the intended effect. It creates dependent, weak people that will never be able to fend for themselves, will complain about everything that doesn’t go their way – and, worse of all – they will then blame you for it.
This isn’t some post about social services, people in poverty that need support due to systemic issues, or helping people get on their feet. I am all about providing a platform so people can learn to fish for themselves, provided it is a plan that teaches responsibility and accountability – not dependency.
No, I am talking about this culture where everyone feels like they deserve to “be somebody” even though they haven’t done something, anything. You are not a unique snowflake just because you were born. You have to earn it. And much like 90% of lottery winners going broke within a few years because they didn’t earn it, so too will our culture and country if we continue to reward and recognize people for doing nothing.