America is better than that

April 10, 2014 

I often write about our society's sense of entitlement and about when that sense of entitlement crosses the lines of decency to become greed. Although the pathway to this entitlement may vary widely in people's minds, that sense ultimately spans all economic levels equally. When I was young, the lines were much more clearly drawn than they seem to be today.

It was just lately that I figured out why my primary physician had implored me to stay away from junk food. I recently saw a marketing ploy on a bag of potato chips that read "Too good to share," and it became crystal clear to me that the Doc was, knowingly or unknowingly, helping me protect my human dignity and humility as well as my body.

Nothing in this entire world is "too good to share," especially with one's immediate family. It is sobering to think that our society has decayed to the level of greed that encourages the hoarding of a plentiful commodity such as wavy Ranch flavored potato chips. If we have become so prone to isolating ourselves from the pleasures acquired from such a meager collective enjoyment, what does it say about our values and senses of social grace, nationalism and family?

To the homeless, hungry, underpaid and underemployed, I say, "America is better than that." To the veterans seeking ever-dwindling rehabilitation resources, I say, "America is better than that." To the neo-cons who thought that advertisement was appropriate, I say, "America is better than that."

Richard Yesley

New Athens

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