Personal Responsibility and Accountability
I think one of my biggest pet-peeves now-a-days is that people are taking less and less responsibility for their actions. And it’s for anything. I would like to say that words mean something but giving your word apparently doesn’t mean anything today. If you say you’re going to help a friend move, and then don’t show up, what does that say about you? If you say you’re going to be at a gathering or get together and then don’t show up what does it say about you? If you say you’re going to meet a deadline and then miss it, what does it say about you?
If you see someone stranded on the side of the road and you drive on by thinking “well someone else is going to stop by and help that person,” as you move along past them (also known as the bystander effect (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bystander_effect) what does that say about you? Have we as a society been conditioned to react this way now? I believe we have, and it’s been intentional. If the government is the solution to everything then why should you do anything? Government largess and encroachment into our lives is at an all-time high – everyone assumes that someone else is responsible or someone else will take care of that. The more we as a society give up our own responsibilities for taking care of our fellow man, the more freedoms we give up in trade for a security blanket that eventually can do what it wants to any member of society without repercussion.
Take school children and their parents for example (from here):
Some students aren’t doing well in school. Those of us over 30 would have been dressed down by our parents, and forced to give up social or extramural activities to study more. Now, teachers are blamed for not “reaching” a student who may simply not be ready to learn—either because he or she didn’t have breakfast that morning, comes from a household with abuse or where education is not emphasized, or merely has a bad attitude. The fact that it is the educators themselves who are held accountable for students’ grades (instead of the students themselves) only emboldens those students who don’t want to do the work and spares the parents who can’t or won’t take some responsibility for their students’ educations.
Who knows the exact causes of our education system to turn upside down but like many things in our society its just one more thing that we will have to fix – and much of this has to be done at home, one person at a time standing up and saying “I refuse to be part of the problem.”
So what does that mean to you who are reading this? If it bothers you, then why don’t you do something about it? Why not come to the realization that you are ultimately responsible for your actions as a man or woman. Accept that when you set a date or time to be somewhere that you show up. Don’t offer excuses. Be honest with yourself and your friends. Be the type of person that people want to be or be around because you hold yourself to higher standards than our society has set. Refuse to be part of the problem. Be self-reliant. Be responsible. Be educated.