Personal Responsibility: an Oxymoronic Perspective

In: English and Literature

Submitted By nicksummers1
Words 1264
Pages 6
Personal Responsibility: An Oxymoronic Perspective
Nick Summers
Gen/200
March 28, 2012
Vlad Bolmar, Instructor
Personal Responsibility: An Oxymoronic Perspective By definition, an oxymoron is a figure of speech that combines two normally contradictory words and turns them into an acceptable and understandable phrase. For example, “jumbo shrimp” and “pretty ugly” are common oxymoronic expressions. In fact, the word “oxymoron” itself is an oxymoron taken from the Greek words oxy (meaning "sharp" or "pointed") and moros (meaning "dull"). Regretfully, the phrase “personal responsibility” in today’s society is fast becoming an oxymoron. This is because so many of today’s young people are being raised with a sense of entitlement, ease, and luxury. Many of them don’t see the correlation between responsibility and success. And, as a result, when life’s misfortunes arise—and they always will—their first knee-jerk reaction is to blame other people or circumstances for their own personal woes. This, in turn, only compounds the problem by making the person feel as if they are a victim: powerless, helpless, and unable to change themselves or control any future condition. Consider the words of Steven Reiss, Ph.D. (2010), “We live in an era where few people are held responsible for their misbehavior. From elementary school children who don't do homework to oil company CEOs who engage in criminal behavior, the consequences often seem to fall on the system rather than on the people who actually misbehaved.” Common sense tells us that if you do not make a child accountable for the homework he neglects to do, he will not feel the need to change his behavior anytime soon. Additionally, if parents do not give their children simple chores around the house, or make them accountable for misdeeds, those children eventually become lazy, unmotivated, and ungrateful.…...

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