Ever have something painful happen that changes how you understand the world?
I used to think that all those insufferable Ayn Rand people were dead wrong. How can somebody choose to mooch off of the work of others if having a career was so fulfilling. Surely, I thought, people weren’t unemployed through a willful decision, but through an injustice in the system that robbed them of opportunity. I assumed that either they were born poor and didn’t have the chances that the rest of us had. Or their qualified resume’s went ignored because their name betrayed a race or gender which employers disfavored (consciously or not)… But I think I was wrong.
A while back I witness somebody whom I personally gave opportunity after opportunity, and who just wastes them away. Then when I said “no more” they decided that instead of focusing on getting their life in order and earning a living, that they would instead opt to have me pay for their welfare.
Maybe Ayn Rand was right. Some people, if given the choice, will take from others instead of making it on their own, and in their mind they will justify it. That they are entitled to it for whatever reason makes sense to them.
Perhaps both are true. There are people who want honest work and are denied this by a systemic injustice which can only be fixed at the scale of government. AND there are some people who abuse this fix in order to free-load. I think it’s important to give people a chance to break out of the cycle of poverty; I myself am a successful product of such a government-scale fix. My family were given such assistance and we all contribute now. I paid it forward, and the recipient was ungrateful, entitled, and self-assured in their course of inaction.