Responsibility: A Dangerous Game

Hannah White, Staff Writer

To be completely honest, despite what we’re repeatedly told, being responsible is excessively overrated.  No matter who you are (or think you are), responsibility just may come out to be a curse.

Once people know that you are a relatively responsible person, there is no going back.  Soon everyone will be swarming to ask you to do something for them.  And if you’re bad at saying “no,” you’re pretty much screwed.  “Will you babysit my seven kids for four hours fifteen minutes from now?”  “Ummmm, I guess?”  “Will you cover my shift?”  “Sure, no problem!”  “Will you help with this fundraiser?  It’s for the children!”  “Of course!”  “Will you make a promotional video for this?”  “Uhhhh . . . yeah, I can do that.”  “Since I know you’ll do a good job, will you do our entire group project?”  “Right, sure.”  “Oh, I’m glad you’re my lab partner!  You’ll do all the work!”  “Whaaaaa . . . ?”  Pretty soon you’ll want to smash your face against a brick wall – repeatedly.  Whether for school, work, church, or random people who want you to take care of their children, you will have far too many responsibilities for any normal human to have to deal with.  It’s ridiculous.

But it doesn’t stop there.  Say you know you’re going to miss a day of school for something (Academic Decathlon, for instance) and you decide that you are going to be a responsible person and get all of your schoolwork the day before.  But because you are responsible and have the work, you have to turn it in with everyone else – but you had zero time because you 1) were at an Academic Decathlon competition and 2) had all the other commitments of life.  Being responsible is a trap, kids.

Said David Wei, writer for the Minnesota State University Reporter, “My concern is ultimately that some students have taken on so much responsibility these days that we’ve forgotten what we like to do in the midst of our schedules filled with control, be it self-control, climate control or a remote control. Responsibility becomes more of a definition for the restrictions and delayed gratification we impose upon ourselves than merely something that implies reliability and a duty well done.”  Responsibility has turned into a cage that restricts its captives from doing anything remotely enjoyable with their lives.  It seems like getting a job, being accepted into college, or receiving scholarships requires being responsible – but all that responsibility only makes life miserably difficult.

Side-effects of responsibility include (but are not limited to): headaches (from banging your head against the wall), changing messy diapers, crying (which adds to the headache), lack of sleep, angry parents (because you’re so bad at saying “no” and are never home), dehydration (no time to drink water!), getting walked all over, never having time for yourself, extreme levels of stress, no fun, mental breakdowns, decrease in health, loss of hair, increase or decrease in appetite, ulcers, and eventually may lead to DEATH.  Please talk to your doctor before becoming responsible.

Run while you can, kids.  Don’t let responsibility start to control you.