This week, I’m thinking about entitlement: the belief that one is inherently deserving of privileges or special treatment.
I’ve seen horrible examples of entitlement by the police. Peaceful protestors have been attacked, members of the press have been attacked and arrested, even credentialed members of foreign press have been attacked. The police act with impunity. There are potential legal consequences for only a few.
I also saw a wonderful example of a scared 5-year-old black child being reassured by a policeman that he wasn’t going to shoot her. It’s horrible that she even needed to worry about such a possibility at her tender age. [Note: I will grant you that the media focuses more on bad things than good.]
I’ve seen peaceful protestors being tear-gassed to clear a road so President Trump could have his picture taken in front of a church. Horrible.
A 22-year-old woman with asthma from Columbus, Ohio, died after being tear-gassed during a peaceful protest. A fatal asthma attack was activated by tear gas.
When former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin murdered George Floyd, the look on his face and the action he took shows me he felt entitled. He even knew he was being filmed (thank God!) and it didn’t change his actions. He acted with impunity. Had even one of the 3 other officers implored Chauvin to “get off him,” George Floyd might be alive and they wouldn’t be facing severe criminal penalties.
President Trump told all of us about entitlement when he said, “And when you’re a star, they let you do it. You can do anything.” “I shove TicTacs in my mouth and just start kissing them.”
There’s too much entitlement in our world. Racism is entitlement. There have been anti-racism protests all over the U.S. and Europe in response to George Floyd’s murder. It has been amazing to witness. This is a global movement. It would be great if the outcome is far less racism in our world.
Less racism equates to less entitlement.
Photo on blog post by courtesy of Flickr: Ted Eytan
Thought for the week:
“When you lose, don’t lose the lesson.” – His Holiness, The Dalai Lama