I was moving into My new house when I overheard this conversation, taking place on the sidewalk:
"When did you file (your taxes)?"
"The last day."
"What did you do?"
"I claimed my sister's older boy. I'm not stealing. That's money that's mine because they (the government) took it."
Oh My aching noggin...
Let Me see... The government took out taxes from this woman's paycheck and she decides to fraudulently claim her nephew as a deduction in order to get money she thinks is hers. Now you know I'm no close friend of the government or taxes, but what this woman has done is theft. Pure and simple.
And despite the fact that she knows it is theft, she justifies it because--hey!--that money "is" hers.
Now rationalization has been around since Eve accepted an apple (or rather, since Someone thought a Tree of Knowledge would be a good idea). But the level of rationalization We have on this Island to "prove" We are "entitled" beggars belief. (With a strong emphasis on beggars.)
We are convinced that the government has to give Us money, a sort of sugar daddy with deep pockets that pays Our way so We can be indolent. When said government collects money from Us in order to parcel it back for the services We demand, We act all affronted and find ways to take back what We are so convinced is Ours. Are the taxes We pay fair? I don't think so. But committing fraud is not the way to deal with that issue.
"Auntie Tax" over here knows she broke the law. I'm sure she could have found legitimate deductions to receive some of the money she was docked. Maybe not $1,000 or so, but isn't $350 received honestly better than $1,000 you stole?
A quick poll on that here would reveal an 81-19 split in favor of the stolen $1,000. (If you think I'm too harsh, run the poll. I bet I'm closer to the actual honest result than you.) For the person with entitlement mentality, the world owes him/her the means to satisfy their needs, whims and wants. However that happens is okay, even if one must--in fact--make an even greater effort to receive illegitimate bounty than it would take to earn it honestly. Thus, machinations and schemes to steal rather than research and action for legitimacy.
Once a person feels entitled, s/he has left the realm of productivity for the slums of passivity, the world of "I earn" for the black hole called "Give me," the heights of "I contribute" for the depths of "You must serve me." No wonder We have the disgrace of nearly half Our adult population as non-working freeloaders: Our sense of entitlement has deep roots indeed.
And these deep roots are fed by political manure and educational offal, a veritable buffet of fertilizer We eat up like dung beetles, with those of Us seeking to rise above all that sneered and jeered at as idiots for not taking the easy road. And oh how they sneer.
And though it's sad to say, let's let them sneer, for without a doubt these freeloaders are entitled to their idiocy. After all, it very likely is the only thing they've ever earned.
The Jenius Has Spoken.