Ignorance and a sense of entitlement. Is that what people are coming to in North America nowadays? It’s more a time of asking “what’s in it for me and, how can I get it. Damn everyone and everything else!”
In looking around any mall or large store, one can find it flourishing in every parking lot, store or cashier line-up. It’s in the people who illegally park in non-parking spots or taking up space directly in front of the store where parking is prohibited, sitting there blindly while other cars struggle to get around them or, swearing in return when someone honks because they can’t get past.
It shines clearly through those who try to take full buggy loads through cashier lanes clearly marked as Express Lanes or, those who stand in front of jewellery, pharmacy or electronics cash registers to pay for items not from those departments, getting angry and starting a fuss if the cashiers attempt to refuse to ring through their cart full of groceries.
It’s heard in the voices of those who will scream at their kids, now having wandered 3 or 4 aisles over from them, knocking things off of shelves, destroying displays while chasing one another and tripping others, never being checked upon or reigned in by their parent or parents.
It’s in the persons who park their buggies horizontally across an aisle in a grocery store, blocking everyone else from getting up or down it while they look at the side of a can or box and ignore the lineups of those waiting to get past them.
It lays in the fingers of those in cosmetic departments who break seals on lipsticks, by-passing testers to rub lipstick onto their hand then put it back onto the display or, in those who open nail polishes and proceed to paint the shelf or signs with it like graffiti artists.
One can see it in banks where the line-ups are long and the instant tellers are being taken up by someone’s children who are punching the keys, playing on every untaken machine while their mother barely looks over or ignores what her children are doing to others, waiting.
It lays in the clothing, knocked off of racks then, stepped on or rolled over with buggies as they walk away, leaving what they’ve destroyed behind them.
If that isn’t enough, it’s found in those who don’t ever use the words, “please” or “thank you” when someone has gone out of their way to be courteous or polite to them.
How about having to listen to someone’s entire conversation on a cell phone while waiting quietly in a doctor’s office or other quiet place or, their ringers going off and them not answering it but, not shutting the ringer or notifications off either.
There’s an endless list of things that people do or don’t do that can be considered a sense of ignorance or entitlement and while it would be wishful thinking to peg it down to discount department stores such as Walmart or, certain groups of people, the truth is that this type of occurrence happens in every public place, every ethnic, race, creed or culture. Rich or poor, the attitude is seemingly the same.
Ignorance seems to know no boundaries and a sense of entitlement seems to come with today’s mindset being one of “it’s what I want that matters” which brings it forward. No one cares anymore about anyone else or even politeness, the laws or common courtesy.
Worse than anything, it seems that people who are privileged enough to live in developed countries now seem to think that what they want and need, when they want it and need it, should be provided for them and everyone else be damned. It’s not what they can do to show appreciation for what they have but more what they can get out of everything. It’s a sense of entitlement and with that…comes the ignorance.
The saddest thing of all is that everyone is so afraid of the repercussions from admonishing these people or even bringing them to justice in the law or other forms of re-alignment that no one really does anything anymore so, they continue on doing it and pushing the boundaries further. Political Correctness has made this worse. Are we so afraid of offending a culture or a religion that we can’t even let them know that they are crossing boundaries and laws? Are we that afraid that we won’t even attempt to correct any of this type of behaviour? How will Society develop in a civilized manner when everyone figures that it’s ok to do whatever they want and can get away with it?
Isn’t it time that we stepped up to the plate and said,
“NO…you cannot park here. It’s illegal.”
“Please move your buggy so that I can get past,” and not fear repercussions.
“Get your children under control or leave, please. thank you,” and push the person to handle their children’s poor behaviour or leave with them.
“No, I will NOT ring through your purchases in this department. You’ll have to go to the appropriate cashier for that,” and, “I don’t care how long you stood here, waiting…your purchases are NOT from this department.”
“Stop opening the bottles of cosmetics as this is considered theft and vandalism. You are paying for these items now.”
“Your yelling at your spouse or children is bothering my right to shop in peace. Take your argument outside of the store.”
“You knocked clothing off of that rack, knew it, left it there and proceeded to walk over it. It’s considered yours now. I’ll ring that up at the register.”
“Please obey the ‘no cell phone’ sign and turn off your cell phone or, step outside to make your call.”
“Please move to the side so that I can get past you.”
“I’m sorry but you have a buggy full of items that far exceeds this line’s purpose. Please move to another suitable cashier and let me past or I will cause a fuss at the desk when you’re considered next.”
Sadly, these types of statements are rarely made by either services, store associates/employees or those of us who are inconvenienced by these types of people and their scenarios. Equally sadly, I could fill volumes of written words on the subject but, won’t. All that I can say further right now is…that’s how I’m seeing things going in today’s world and from my little corner of life in it and, I’m sure that I’m not alone in seeing it or feeling this way, am I?