A Society of Entitlement



August 10, 2011

André Schutten – With the riots in London making front page news, I found the comments of Kelly McParland pretty bang-on. 

A society built on entitlement, where the government exists solely to give me everything I need, nay, everything I want, will eventually suffer. What we see in London and in the United States markets now, and saw in Greece only a few months ago, it all screams the self-centered entitlement mantra. As stated so eloquently elsewhere,

This Greek tragedy holds lessons for all world economies, Canada’s included. A Leviathan state will ultimately be crushed by its own weight, not only that of its ballooning debt, but the attitude that underpins its largesse. When the government cares for citizens from cradle to grave, individuals lose the will and ability to support themselves. They also routinely bite and cheat the hand that feeds them: The state may be responsible for everyone, but no one takes responsibility for the state.


Are we, as Christians, falling prey to this type of thinking? We must be careful that we recognize the role of government, what it is and what it is not. We also need to recognize our individual role in society, the role of the institution of the family, the church, the charitable sector and the marketplace. We must be careful to not allow in our own minds and actions the poisonous idea that our help comes from the name of the State, who made hospitals and schools and protects us and cares for us and feeds and clothes us, Amen. Such a socialist mentality is a form of idolatry, and we do well to recognize it.

The democrat John F. Kennedy once said, “Ask not what your country can do for you – ask what you can do for your country.” It’s a good maxim by which to shape your political philosophy. 

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