Pursuit of an iPad
I have truly been bothered the last few weeks by people who think they are entitled to anything and everything. I have worked since I was fourteen years old -- yes, Obama administration, I was able to get a special work permit when I was fourteen and was able to be the Easter Bunny for two years in a department store in Michigan. Since my mother was a widow with five children, it helped that I could work and buy all of my own clothes. Working as the Easter Bunny allowed me to also work in the department store waiting on customers during the summer and on weekends when it wasn't Easter. That background is very important as I move forward with my story. Now, I am a 62-year-old woman who has never even received a check for unemployment. Nope, not even once in my life. I have worked and paid taxes all my life.
These days, I have a bad case of the "I Wants" -- a really bad case of the "I Wants." I want an iPad. It is a frivolous thing for me to want one. This want doesn't come from a need, but neither does the want for a cell phone, for having my nails done, or for going to Chipotle on Wednesday evenings every week. It is a desire. I could save and buy one for myself, but then I got to thinking -- shouldn't I be entitled to something? I think I should be entitled to an iPad.
You see, we go to Chipotle every Wednesday to spend time with friends and family. We had gone to Subway every Tuesday night when our two daughters were little while I worked days and my husband worked nights. Tuesday was the only night we had as a family. We took the Readers Digest every week and talked about the stories, read the jokes, and worked on word definitions.
As for our girls, they looked forward to Tuesday nights. Now they are grown. Our oldest daughter came to us about five years ago and wanted to recapture some of the fun times she remembered by having dinner on Wednesday nights. Ever since then, we have met family and friends at 6:00 every Wednesday evening at Chipotle.
On a particular Wednesday a couple of weeks ago, I sent a note to my oldest daughter. She was working at her job, and I wanted her to know what I wanted to talk about at dinner. The topic that night would be why the government should pay for every citizen to have an iPad. One of my friends was in Peru on vacation and was communicating via iPad, and it just got the best of me. I must have an iPad. My daughter immediately wrote back and reminded me that the Declaration of Independence clarifies everything for us -- we are entitled to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. The government is not required to make us happy by giving us things.
Talk about feeling deflated! But I knew there were reasons I could come up with to make an iPad a necessity to everyone, not just to me, so I began making a list.
People can load books on an iPad and make themselves more intelligent and well-read. Think about it -- the people who are "Occupiers" would have something to do while they are sitting around every day. They could be called OccuPads. That would be a plus, wouldn't it? Also, they like to stop traffic -- both driving and foot traffic -- and there is an app you can get to let you know where the biggest delays in traffic are. They can use the app to go delay it further.
How about people who get DUIs or traffic tickets? As they wait in the long line at the Department of Motor Vehicles, they can use the iPad to check out law, look for lawyers, read a book, play a game, or check out how to mix drinks. There is even an app that tells you where to find a bar that serves your favorite drink for the smallest amount of money.
My husband use to teach school in the state prison system to 13- to 21-year-old boys. I thought about how important an iPad could be to those in prison. We have removed these people from their families and put them in small cells, forbidding contact with the outside. iPads have the ability to video-chat with those on the outside, so prisoners can keep in touch with their children (even though they are young, they have children -- some have several children), plus girlfriends and family.
But then again, wait a minute. The "Occupiers" can go out and get a job, and buy their own OccuPad. Those at the DMV should have thought about the consequences before they made a bad choice. Prisoners are already paying the consequences for their actions. The last thing they need is contact with the friends who helped put them in prison to begin with. I must say, though, that one common thread throughout these scenarios is this -- the government is taking money from me to pay for them to have what they want already.
"Occupiers" are not working. Many are already collecting something from the government. Lots of them, but not all of them, are educated. Some actually quit their jobs to join the movement. Now they want their student loans forgiven. When our daughter went to college, we had to pay back our portion of her student loan, and she had to pay back her part. An education means so much more when you have "skin in the game." Actually, everything is more cherished when you have to work for it.
How did people get so off-track in the United States? Again, we are owed life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. I went to the dictionary and looked up "pursuit." There are three definitions: 1. The act or an instance of chasing or pursuing. 2. The act of striving: the pursuit of higher education. 3. An activity, such as a vocation or hobby, engaged in regularly. I read this as always looking for something I can aspire to -- to give everything I can to make me a better person.
I am not entitled to an iPad. It doesn't mean I don't want one more than anyone can imagine, but it does mean that I need to save for it myself -- darn it! I think that our government already helps those in a bad situation, but it shouldn't become a lifestyle to think that we don't need to set our own goals that we can achieve.
How badly do I need an iPad? I don't need one at all. How badly do I want an iPad? I really, really, really want one! I would like to think I am entitled, but I know I need to set the goal and save for it myself. That is what I am entitled to do.