Readers, you may or may not have seen or heard the story of DeAngelo Williams and the Haughtily Returned Ribbon. (If you have not, click that link.) An awful lot of people are talking about it.
Here's the short version: Mr. Williams, a professional football player, recently attended "field day" activities at his young daughter's school. His daughter ran in some sort of race, and got a ribbon.
So far, so good, right?
Except, hold on. Did we mention that his daughter hadn't won the race? That she didn't even podium?!?
Whoa-whoa-whoa, you're saying at this point. Then why the f*** did she get a f***ing RIBBON?
Exactly! Thank you!
Mr. Williams, for one, wasn't having it. He and the two guys with him in Mr. Williams' video, who mostly stand by frowning and nodding solemnly as he speaks, have had it up to here with this crap.
So Mr. Williams returned his daughter's ribbon, presumably with a steely gaze, and proceeded to Teach Her a Lesson in How the Real World Works.
Good for him!
Oh, I suppose there are a few of you out there—you know who you are—who think giving kids something just for "showing up" and for "doing their best" is not a big deal. Or that if a kid grows up with no appreciation for the value of hard work and tenacity, unable to comprehend what it means to win and to lose, it might be because of some other failing, not because the kid's phys ed instructor gave him a strip of faux-satin after a potato sack race in the third grade.
Some of you might even have the gall to suggest that the "Entitlement Age of Kids," to borrow Mr. Williams' phrase, itself is a phenomenon about as real as the "War on Christmas," another phony-baloney crisis invented and perpetuated by self-righteous folks who mistake people's talking about a thing for something's actually being a thing.
Listen, you few, and listen closely: People like you are losers. Just like Mr. Williams' daughter was after that Field Day race.
You are the reason we find ourselves unable to leave the house most days without stepping over multiple bodies of sloth-like millennials who won't budge unless someone encourages them because they expect to have everything handed to them on a silver platter oh my God kids today are the worst and we know every generation says that about the generation that follows theirs but this time it's REAL and the world is just going to hell by the way it's high time we brought back spanking too I was spanked and I turned out fine!!!
Sorry. When we think about this Entitlement Age of Kids we're in, we get a little swept up.
Anyway, enough is enough, says Mr. Williams, and we say it too. We at Dumb Runner stand with Mr. Williams and his Very Solemn video friends. Also with this Facebook user, who commented on Mr. Williams' video:
We think this message, which is representative of many comments that Mr. Williams has gotten, does a tremendous job of demonstrating just what sort of problem we're really dealing with here.
Mr. Williams, given your courage and conviction, your determination to set the rest of us straight, and your outside-the-box thinking, it is clear that you are not merely a participant in the War on the Entitlement Age of Kids—you, sir, are winning that war.
We therefore award you this ribbon:
You have definitely earned it.