More public-transit-inspired thoughts, this time on the nature of deserving

It seems that the T.T.C. truly is a valuable vehicle (haha) of thought.  Some time prior to my leaving for the cottage, I stumbled upon this advertisement while riding the subway:

“You deserve a better career” made me stand still, admittedly – and the advertisement did, then, do its job – but something about this doesn’t quite sit well with me.

If we, for a moment, abandon realism (and, consequently, the fact that ads are geared at getting people to purchase goods and services), then we’ve a serious problem here.  Any individual walking past is being told that he or she deserves the kind of lucrative, customizable career described – one typically attained by people who’ve earnestly developed their qualifications.

I understand that removing this fragment from its context probably results in my raising a concern that doesn’t really exist, but it does prompt interesting questions that I will leave you with, but won’t attempt to answer here.  What, really, is “deserving”?  What kind of criteria determine whether or not a person “deserves” a given position in professional or personal life?  Can character traits be used to assign merit in unrelated situations, like this one (in other words, if you’re a relatively good person, do you essentially deserve to receive help in advancing yourself)?  Where does this interact with essential human rights?

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This entry was posted in On Humanity: Events, Policy, Ethics. Bookmark the permalink.

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