The lost art of taking a loss with dignity

As I sat on the couch watching the closing hours of the election, my wife and I looked at each other in surprise, not because we thought that the world was going to end or this somehow marked the end of democracy, but simply because the host of The Apprentice was now president. The next day the sun would still rise, homework was still due, work still needed to be done and we would still love each other. Although we were both in college and had front seats to the decay of our generation’s moral spine, we foolishly thought after all had sunk in that this would be the response shared by most.

However, students showed up to class in tears, and the protests that had been raging for months kicked up in intensity. The relief after a fairly ugly election that I had anticipated eluded the populace. While this reaction should not have surprised, it did. The lack of maturity, class, and acceptance disappointed me. Why? Why was this the result despite the fact there is one side that loses every single election?

I am not a political writer, nor am I a student of human psychology. I am simply a sports reporter, which means I can observe objectively and will then equate this back to sports.

The problem with this generation of liberals is they have absolutely no idea how to lose. My generation has almost always received a trophy, gotten the ribbon, never kept score, avoided picking teams so no one was last and constantly took part in the spoils of victory despite the performance put forth. While this was a problem that shows most easily in sports, it has reached an ugly hand into everything. Kids are not punished in school, and students are constantly given outs and grade curves to help with classes. They are told they are special, nothing they could strive to is wrong, and they will always be successful because no one wanted to hurt their feelings and say otherwise. They then are sent to colleges where they are told that any belief in their head cannot possibly be wrong, and will always be excepted.

The problem then extends further than a generation that does not know how to lose. It is now a generation that has no appreciation for consequence. Why would they? Every misstep taken has been labeled as free will and expression. So when the entire country told a generation of new voters that their candidate was a lock, then saw her go down in a stunning election, they had no idea what do with themselves.

What has followed has been nothing short of disgusting. People have crowded the streets to protest the new president, crying out against one of life’s simplest happenings: losing. While we should all be grateful every four years that one power willingly relinquishes control to the incoming power, something few countries can say, the masses cry out because the concept of something not going their way is foreign.

I am not speaking out against the freedom to protest, or against the freedom of speech, but people are destroying property, defending actual crimes with the idea they are expressing themselves. The ignorance of how good we have it because of an elected official that has yet to fail makes this country’s masses look dreadfully unprepared for most anything of significance.

And to those who say I am overreacting, I am the one who has to go to class and work the rest of my life in the workforce with these individuals and their souped-up sense of entitlement.

We are living in a world that has coddled these infants for 20 odd years of life and ill prepared them for the smallest bump in the road. Instead of trusting a system of checks and balances, the country has thrown itself into the disarray that they will then blame the president for. The reaction to Trump is far more concerning than anything I anticipate from the president.

The idea of losing with grace like an adult, or accepting consequences for actions, has missed a generation and now the real tragedy has come to light.

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