Skip to comments."Everyone gets a trophy" syndrome - where does this idea come from?
Posted on 07/07/2012 8:04:11 AM PDT by ProgressingAmerica
Are you sick and tired of seeing everybody get a trophy? Everybody's a winner even though they aren't? Let's just call it a tie, even when one clearly was smarter or faster?
Yesterday, I stated that John Rawls concept of the 'natural lottery' is the biggest thing that got my attention in his writing. This is a close second. Before I proceed here, I need to stipulate that I'm not laying the blame solely at Rawls feet, because I cannot prove that. But what I am doing is saying that the idea is here, in 1971, at least. But hopefully by putting this on the map someone with far greater capability for research can dig out the roots, because the way this is written it appears as if Rawls is referencing others. And unsurprisingly, it comes from academia and progressive professors.
In John Rawls book "A Theory of Justice", on page 276 he writes the following:
As we have seen, it is incorrect to say that just distributive shares reward individuals according to their moral worth. But what we can say is that, in the traditional phrase, a just scheme gives each person his due: that is, it allots to each what he is entitled to as def ined by the scheme itself. The principles of justice for institutions and individuals establish that doing this is fair.
Now it should be noted that even though a persons claims are regulated by the existing rules, we can still make a distinction between being entitled to something and deserving it in a familiar although nonmoral sense. To illustrate, after a game one often says that the losing side deserved to win. Here one does not mean that the victors are not entitled to claim the championship, or whatever spoils go to the winner. One means instead that the losing team displayed to a higher degree the skills and qualities that the game calls forth, and the exercise of which gives the sport its appeal. Therefore the losers truly deserved to win but lost out as a result of bad luck, or from other contingencies that caused the contest to miscarry. Similarly even the best economic arrangements will not always lead to the more preferred outcomes. The claims that individuals actually acquire inevitably deviate more or less widely from those that the scheme is designed to allow for. Some persons in favored positions, for example, may not have to a higher degree than others the desired qualities and abilities. All this is evident enough. Its bearing here is that although we can indeed distinguish between the claims that existing arrangements require us to honor, given what individuals have done and how things have turned out, and the claims that would have resulted under more ideal circumstances, none of this implies that distributive shares should be in accordance with moral worth. Even when things happen in the best way, there is still no tendency for distribution and virtue to coincide.
Does it really surprise you that the "all are winners" mentality is rooted in wealth redistribution? It shouldn't. The progressives have long known that if they want to wear us down as a people and remove our industriousness, they need to do it at the school level. Wilson said this as plainly and openly as possible.
Again, I hope people won't automatically run around proclaiming this(page 276) the absolute source of the concept, because that is yet to be proven. What is proven, is that this man knew of an idea that he may or may not have seen written from another one of his academic buddies, and wrote it down here in this book.
But in modern America circa 2012, where is this mentality pushed the most? Some may say little leagues, but this is not accurate. Little leagues get it from somewhere else: the schools. Kindergarten all the way up to colleges.(I didn't get this part of Rawls ideals in my college classes, but I was taught Rawls. That's why I read him in the first place)
It's the schools who are throwing red ink overboard because it's too hurtful.
It's the schools who are pushing very hard this whole "self esteem" nonsense.(I found way too many articles to reference just one, sorry)
It was the schools who banned dodgeball.
It's the schools who have gotten rid of A, B, C, D, and F in favor of S, N, and U. In some places, the letter grading system is being scrapped altogether in favor of some weird numbering system. Note why the school system has proposed this: psychological reasons. It's too harsh, like red ink. And note the numbers: 3, 2, 1. But the numbers are not being used how you may think. The school system is teaching that if you're number 1, you're the loser. And if you got the 3, you're the winner.
There's a 3 for being on or above grade level academically, a 2 for being less than a year below grade level and a 1 for being more than a year below grade level.
What might go a long way toward actually diagnosing/curing this problem is recognition that America does not have public schools. These are government schools doing this. Government schools, full of big government nanny state progressives, who are polluting the youth of America with all of this.
What America desperately needs is a separation of schools and state. The colleges formulate these ideals, and 30-40 years later, they're widely implemented and highly destructive.
it’s part of the commie ideology
change trophy for salary then you’d have everyone getting the same salary
it sets expectations in the minds of kids they will bring to their adulthood
As Rush calls it, it’s the “wussification” of America. Be sure we’re all timid, sheepish and uncompetetive. Take away our guns, tell us what to eat, what not to smoke or drink and the crowning glory...control our healthcare and it’s completely over.
Liberals, losers, pompous self important micro-managers, all the same.
Doesn’t communism and socialism frown upon all competition? I remember this self esteem crap in the early eighties when my children were young. I continued to insist that my children:
1. Edit their writing as they go along not after
2. Memorize their multiplication tables
3. Learn to do basic math in their heads
4. Reject the “everyone’s a winner” garbage
They are successful adults now; not like many of their peers whose parents accepted this rubbish.
Oh and by the way, I also (gasp) SPANKED!!!
I don’t mind it for special Olympics but otherwise I agree with the author.
This article is another example of what AnonymousConservative talks about on his FR profile page about the psychology of liberal vs conservative views...very interesting.
Very strange that the strongest and most vocal supporters of evolution do everything possible to assure the human race does not evolve but becomes stagnant at best or devolves thanks to a huge influx of losers convinced they are winners by other losers who thought they were winners......etc
“but lost out as a result of bad luck, or from other contingencies that caused the contest to miscarry”
This mindset is the foundation of the “no consequences” mentality.
My actions don’t matter. I am not responsible for the results.
I deserve what I “want”. You’ve got it, so give it to me.
To my reading the Rawls quote does not say what the author says it does.
All Rawls is saying is that economic rewards are not always distributed in ways by which the persons who morally “deserve” (term left undefined) the rewards actually get them.
Does anybody actually believe otherwise? Haven’t we all known people who worked hard and behaved honorably their whole lives and never got ahead, due to bad luck? And haven’t we all also known people who are wildly successful while lying and cheating; not to mention others who just happen to be in the right place at the right time?
Does anybody seriously think Bill Gates or Steve Jobs would have wound up world-bestriding figures had they started their careers in 1500, or for that matter in 1950?
I hope no conservative believes the free market system is morally fair in a cosmic sense. It’s not.
The free market is just the most fair of all systems of wealth distribution that humans can use. Certainly much more fair than a system based on favoritism dispensed by the ruling classes, with waivers, bailouts, etc. A more fair system would require absolute rule by God, or by an entity with knowledge and powers that were godlike.
“Everyone gets a trophy” syndrome - where does this idea come from?”
I don’t mind it.
yeah you ar probably right. Many not all women just want everyone to be happy, especially kids.
Great post! Thank you.
Just part of the “all cultures are equal” ideology.
I just retired from public education. I worked near Houston, so things were pretty conservative, but the “swimming team” syndrome of universal trophies was alive and well. If a teacher didn’t give a kid an “A” on a report card, the parents would demand a meeting to complain. Most of the time, the kid’s grade was changed to “A”. I asked one parent why they didn’t just keep the little darling home and come by every six weeks to get an all “A” report card since the grades were meaningless. She was at the next school board meeting compalining that I was opposed to “parental involvement”.
The Dodo in Alice in Wonderland. Everyone has won, and all must have prizes!
The problem with this feminine notion, of course, is that if everybody gets a trophy, nobody gets a trophy.
Which makes it a perfect socialist goal: Everyone is equally a loser.
Everyone getting a trophy is not bad per se. It becomes a memento of participating on a team, no different than a team picture. What is bad is refusing to recognize the league champs with a trophy for winning, or to give out special trophies to the best, most valuable players. That demoralizes the best players and teaches that individual effort and excellence is not to be rewarded.
“Everyone gets a trophy” syndrome - where does this idea come from?
Big trophy’s lobbying group.
Whaaa, I didn’t get a trophy! Where’s mine?!?
“Everyone getting a trophy is not bad per se. It becomes a memento of participating on a team, no different than a team picture.”
Back around 1967 I went to my swim team awards dinner. They gave everyone a trophy which was an award, definitely not a team picture. I see a huge difference. It was absolutely worthless to me because I knew I didn’t deserve it or earn it. I was absolutely disgusted with the adults. I was 8 or 9 at the time.
It is hatred of the good for being good. They can’t make the looser perform better so they just make the winners achievement meaningless, except that they can’t really do that because everyone still knows who the best are. But they are counting on people being cowed into not stating it out loud in the name of fairness. It’s the same as the doctrine of unconditional love. If you are asked to love everyone then love becomes meaningless. That’s my opinion anyway.
The problem occurred when we gave more value to avoiding hurt feelings over the legitimate pride of accomplishment. The pain of 100 kids who did not win was deemed worse than the pride of the few kids who placed.
Unfortunately, this de-motivates the achievers while demoralizing all the kids who just get “participation” ribbons.
And it undermines the lessons kids need to learn for the real world. You can’t all get an academy award, and you must learn to deal with rejection - from jobs you don’t get to girls who don’t like you.
I guess it comes down to the purpose of the trophy. Is it to say you excelled at something, or is it to say merely that you were part of a team. If the latter, then a trophy is no different than a photo, a ribbon or a certificate of participation. It is a memento. If the trophy signifies that you did something excellent, though, and it is given to everyone, then it loses value. In any endeavor, we appreciate the things most that we had to work the hardest for. If I had to choose between my MVP trophies and my participation on a team trophies, then I guess I'd go with the MVP ones. But I like all of them. Your mileage may vary.
From cheap trophy manufacturers
Thanks for the ping. It is a very deeply rooted urge, and it affects any perception of competition. When Marx read Darwin’s work, he was profoundly affected by Darwin’s description of the fit surviving, and the less fit being culled. He even wrote Darwin, hoping Darwin would lend support to Marx’s work. Darwin stayed out of it.
Eventually, some saw Darwin’s work, and postulated that a free market economy, which rewarded the smart and industrious, would evolve mankind to be smart and industious. Lib’s flipped out, and labeled it Social Darwinism, as if attaching the word Darwin to it made it an epithet.
Eventually some scientists postulated that groups would compete, and those groups which were made of indivudals with the greatest degree of loyalty, honesty, bravery, selflessness, and other good traits would win, culling the less able groups, and producing these traits within our species. Libs in the sciences set about creating all sorts of models to disprove that, and killed any study of group selection for decades. In the Lib model, altruism, loyalty, and other good traits were evolved by individuals, as a way of exchanging value to better their indivdual chances, and outcompete the selfish takers, who competed, and destroyed themselves by trying to win. It’s laughable, but they will buy into it.
Here, this is the same urge which makes Libs cringe when they think of an economy which rewards the highly capable and industious more than the sloths. The funny thing is how r/K then links it to sex, single parenting, cowardice, and all the r traits.
Once you see it, you see it everywhere. And there is a lot of evidence that if the economy collapses, resources become scarce, and you need to compete to survive, there are large malleable segments of the population which will suddenly find their very natures change beneath them, without their conscious assessment of anything. They will just suddenly go K, and Conservatism will rise unbidden within them.
It’s why the coming collapse may be the best thing which could happen to our nation. People will become more decent, more polite, more loyal, more emotionally attached to each other, and more loving of our nation and it’s freedoms.