One of the worst effects of Victim Culture is how it adversely affects those who adhere to it most stridently. I suppose one could find it just, but I’m inclined to view it as tragic. Regardless, if you’ve ever gotten to know a Professional Victim, you’ll find you have very little to envy. Usually, they have perpetual financial difficulties, sometimes they’ve learned to exploit the System for every penny it’s worth and have enormous wealth or stature. Either way, they’re miserable.
Of course, they blame everybody else for their misery. If would be untrue to say that they never have a point (some things really are working against them), but it countries without actively oppressive laws, it’s primarily the mentality of the Victim that prevents his or her happiness.
For mental well-being requires an Ethic of Gratitude, an ability to focus on and appreciate what’s going right. To consider oneself a Victim who’s Entitled to other people’s stuff, you’ve got to dwell on, mentally catalog, search your past to discover, and make sure everybody else knows all the crap that’s happened to you since before you were even born. If you spend an entire week without somehow being adversely affected because of your womanhood/sexual identity/race/class/history of abuse/etc., you lose those all-important reminders of what you spend so much time and energy cultivating: your identity as a Victim.
So you’ve got to focus on it, perpetually, no matter how good things objectively are. Is it understandable to think this way? Hell yes, it’s understandable, so understandable that sometimes we all do it.
But it’s horribly counterproductive. Sometimes we all feel like the world owes us, but some of us actively work to overcome that tendency within ourselves. Others do everything in their power to preserve it.
Moreover, sometimes we’re even right to believe we’ve been screwed over. Yet the more right you are, the more important it is to solve your problems instead of just bitch about them.
The Ethic of Entitlement
This lack of gratitude leads to the Ethic of Entitlement, a world in which you not only never have enough, you also feel like other people should give it to you. Of course, simply being given to never quench the thirst; after all, you deserve it and could undoubtedly get more.
Hence, the woman who gets the outrageously expensive engagement ring now dropping hints for a push present. It’s the mindset that could come up with a thesis about how deprived she feels at a university millions of people of all races would feel beyond privileged to attend.
A sense of Victimhood can be amplified simply by comparing somebody else’s good fortune with your own. Obviously, some things merit more complaint than others; surviving child abuse is objectively more difficult to overcome than Jenny having a nicer bracelet than you.
Nonetheless, if Kathleen finds that complaining about last year’s anniversary will eventually convince Fred to buy her a nicer bracelet than Jenny’s, last year’s anniversary will undoubtedly feel as unjust as losing both parents in concentration camp.
If she gets the bracelet, she’ll glean no more long-term satisfaction from it than Michelle Robinson did from her acceptance to Princeton. At first, glee. Shortly thereafter, “Sure, that’s great, but…” Still, being that way gets you stuff, and it you feel justified in getting it. Never mind the long-term misery. Each victory gives a great little rush that she won’t ever need again if she could only get that job/those earrings/Scott/perpetual validation for her weight from each and every person on planet earth.
The Ethic of Guilt
Like I stated in my last post, it’s much better to feel Entitled than Benighted. There are lefties who get off on being oppressors who outsource virtue to the government through voting other people’s money into deserving pockets. However, often you’ll find lefties who love to play benefactor until it actually adversely affects them personally. Anointeds love to play Benighted when it doesn’t actually inconvenience them.
Actually being Benighted sucks, especially when you’ve already established yourself as Entitled. You’ve spent countless hours in women’s studies classes learning about all the ways that every commercial you see is a manifestation of how you’ve been screwed. The last thing you want to hear is somebody who’s been even more screwed telling you to shut up and listen to them.
Which is why I’m a staunch supporter of “Operation Lollipop“, false Tweeters who play the role of Feminists of Color criticizing white feminists for all their privilege. They’ve got a point (most white feminists are spoiled rotten), but when this point is made within Victim Culture instead of in opposition to it, it calls into question that very Culture itself.
An Entitled woman learning that her Victim status doesn’t grant her all the goodies she deserves causes internal conflict. She may accept her role within the hierarchy, maybe even cling to it in that her groveling before the Truly Oppressed gives her mental justification to be even nastier to her oppressors (she’s been so damn sympathetic to Erika’s plight that she deserves to indulge her feelings and really give it to that pro-lifer).
However, it’s also possible that she just won’t find accepting the Victim mentality quite as much fun. Who the hell actually wants to do stuff like this? She bought into this whole oppression thing because it would get her stuff, not because she wanted to “[L]ook for ways that you are racist, rather than ways to prove you’re not.” Feeling more guilty than everybody else can lead to a sense of superiority for a while, but if you have any sense of Self you’ll eventually get sick of it.
Indeed, the serious feminist won’t be dissuaded, but it will take away some of the emotional gratification some feminists get from their beliefs.
The Ethic of Gratitude
We can hope that every once in a while a professional Victim will notice an ugly reflection of themselves in how the Truly Oppressed try to lord it over them. Obviously, we’d rather our daughters not get spoiled in the first place. As Alpha males we can help to instill a sense of gratitude in the women in our lives by pointing out how good they have it. After all, if you really do what it takes to make a woman appreciate what she’s got, she actually likes it.
But more importantly, we’ve got to defeat the demon of Entitlement within ourselves. It’s going to be much harder to convince her to not be so damn bothered by the objectification of women in the fashion magazines she reads when you’re spending every night whining about that time your dad ripped into you too hard for that fumble in pee-wee football.
I’m pissed that it took me so long to find, and then swallow, the Red Pill. I’ve had some objective strikes against me that I could write about forever. I don’t always reflect on my own life with all the gratitude I should.
Still, I’m getting over it, even though some of it’s still happening. I recognize that some have had it much worse, and somehow managed to be happy. I’ve got no real excuse.
I don’t always understand what it’s like to go through something, but I do understand that holding onto whatever it is for too long only wears at you no matter what gifts you get or justification you feel from bitching a lot. The better I learn this and become happy myself, the more effective I become at fighting Victim Culture in our society and the Victim Mentality in those I encounter personally.
If you’ve got a problem, solve it. When there’s a wrong, we should right it. Yet those who don’t appreciate what they’ve got now won’t appreciate any future wrongs we right for them in the future, either.
Just like she got sick of that shiny ring a week later. If she’s got the wrong mindset, nothing you do for her will do her any good.