As a child I was raised knowing that the things I wanted in my life were available to me if I worked hard, set and achieved goals, got an education and took opportunities as they came along, and above all that I was honest with myself and others. I was raised in a conservative, traditional family where values, integrity and hard work were taught, they were the center of our lives. We only bought what we could afford, and worked for what we needed. There was a difference in our home between wants and needs, and we always had what we needed, and us boys, there were 6 of us, would have to work for what we wanted.
Our parents taught us to work and to work hard. We had chores and they weren’t just cleaning up after ourselves. It was irrigating the garden, weeding, pouring cement, roto-tilling, hanging sheetrock, and the list goes on… We learned how to repair things around the house including our cars. We were taught to do things for ourselves. We never received a handout and while our friends may have been playing, we worked. Don’t get me wrong, we had times to play after our chores were done, and we had an amazing childhood. We would have a list and would be expected to have them done before dad got home from work. There were more chores in the summer and less during school. We were expected to get our homework done and get good grades. We weren’t paid for these chores or for our grades, it was expected. We didn’t talk back, and were taught to respect our elders.
Where have we gone from these values and teachings as families? as a community,? as a people? We now live in a world of entitlements and freebies. No one wants to work for things yet want everything handed to them immediately, as if they truly deserve them. We as a people have become so accustomed to being given everything we have without working for it. We finance things for instant gratification. We don’t know how to save money, we don’t teach work ethics, honesty, integrity to our children. We are giving our children everything they want and not making them understand the value and character that comes from work.
Work is not just about earning money, it is about character and discipline and self esteem and self worth. When we do not work for what we are given we have no self respect. Our character is lacking and with that our judgement and wisdom decline. With the decline in our judgement, our morals decay and society fails. We lose our freedoms as a people and as a nation because we fail to learn and develop our character as children.
Our society has become one where the youth play video games, hang out, talk back, demand the latest gadgets, disrespect their elders and feel they are entitled to everything their parents have worked hard for without even lifting a finger to work for it themselves. When they make mistakes they blame others, and take no responsibility for their actions. We continue to support this behavior with a sense of wanting our children to have everything we didn’t have. We neglect to see that by avoiding the structure and discipline that is required to be successful while they are children we are setting them and this nation up for failure.
This nation was built with a strong worth ethic and a people of deep character. We are losing those traits, as is evidenced by the individuals we elect to lead us. They too feel it necessary to provide a free ride to anyone who wants it and doesn’t need it. I am all for Charity. I believe in Charity. I also believe that self worth and self esteem are developed through hard work and in picking ourselves up when we do fall. We need to help those around us while at the same time providing a means wherein they can keep their self worth. Those that earn things in life are far greater prepared for difficult times than those whom everything is given, especially as a child.
Children need love, shelter, food, clothing and parents who teach them to be self sufficient and to work for things in life. Our nation is in trouble, morals are decaying and we are failing our children and grandchildren. We need to learn the difference between needs and wants, and then teach them to our children.