American Entitlement: Words of a Cog
You are a producer. Perhaps the largest producer. I am not talking about commodities, or food, but of something much more sinister. You are the largest producer of entitlement and ignorance. Everyday, I read something in the news which makes me cringe on the inside and wish that I could resist the call of Twitter. I am in no way an expert on race relations. I am not a scholar. I am just a simple observer who has formulated an opinion based on what I see, hear and read. It is not pretty. The American Dream which I grew up hearing is one marred with obesity, gun violence and racial tension. Since the 2016 election, another layer of divisiveness has been added. Political alliances have been drawn in the sand with internal strife reaching its breaking limits.
Lately, social media has begun to feel like a battle field. Memes used as drones to send messages without actual engagement. Articles placed carefully like land mines, only there to attract a passer-by, and wait for him/her to explode. So many different groups, so many factions, insistent on arguing about every last bit of information they can dig up. Every last event.
Black Lives Matter
A continuous flow of terms being churned out. Everyone constantly seeking for approval from strangers. Hunting for an identity. Hunting for acceptance. Hunting. Always hunting. Hunting each other. And yet…we want equality. We want acceptance. We want to be treated the same way we treat people, at least that’s what we claim. We want to be recognized. We want to be welcomed. We want to be wanted. We want to be a whole.
Yet every day I see something new which fractures people further. A new term. An insult. An event. So I ask now, what are you going to do about it?
America is the highest producer of entitlement. You think because you were born in a country, salute a flag and sing 1 out 4 verses of a national anthem that you deserve something. I understand that things aren’t fair. Things have never been fair. Progress does not happen overnight. I understand the anger. The outrage. The fact that the system feels rigged, but did you do enough? Did you do everything you could to make your life better? When I am in the United States, I only see three races; White, Black and Latino. And not just black, I mean African Americans.
First generation immigrants from other countries do not come under your radar because you are so caught up in your historic vitriol. While you argue about inequality and the unfairness of your lives, hardworking immigrants enter daily. Finding any means of employment. Attempting to blend into society, and adapt to the reality that is “The American Dream.” Your cab driver used to be a mechanical engineer. Your motel clerk used to be a dentist. Your gas station attendant used to be a pilot. People who have sacrificed their lives, their careers and their education in hopes of giving future generations something more. So I am sorry, but I have no sympathy. While you suckle on the teat of social media, hoping that your echo chamber showers you with digital praise for whining, there are people out there who are doing the jobs you don’t want. The ones you feel are below you. Continue writing your edgy articles, use words like appropriation, cis and snowflake. Argue among yourselves. Type away on your iPhone 7 and Macbooks about how unfair life has been to you.
We will be in the background, the cogs of America. Santa’s elves. Because we know the game is rigged. We know we are made to fail. But not all of us will, some of us will break those barriers and will change this system from the inside. So bask in your lexicon, enjoy the inflated ego and narcissism, because the end is nigh.