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Accountability of the individual

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Illustration by Chance Brown | Staff Illustrator

People like to think that being independent is the utmost important point of focus when it comes to achieving who they want to be and finding themselves. However, working with people in a team or group is the better alternative, as it teaches responsibility and accountability. By learning to communicate, compromise and adapt to situations, people can learn how to better interact with the working world.

Self-discovery is crucial to personal development and growth of a child. Being a part of a team helps children build confidence by understanding what they are good at and where they are most useful. It also allows for the development of networking skills and setting goals they aim to achieve. Accountability largely comes into play in these settings, as everyone has their own role and contribution to the group.

This is paramount to the growth of a child, but how are children supposed to recognize the need for accountability when so many people are able to avoid it? Celebrities such as Kevin Spacey, Lindsay Lohan and Ben Affleck have the ability to commit a horrendous act, go to a comfortable rehab and be deemed clean. Such a shallow process allows them to defer responsibility and place blame on lack of self-awareness or stress.

Of course, celebrities are not the only ones who can ignore their responsibilities in the face of the law. Brock Turner is a prime example. After sexually assaulting an unconscious young girl, his dad deemed the act “20 minutes of action,” to avoid the awful reality of the crime committed. Likewise, Casey Anthony was found not-guilty for the murder of her infant daughter, though she most-likely did so. Our judicial system has allowed for these people to shape laws to their benefit and deter the ones who would hurt them.

Although people are clearly not held to the same standards, parents should enforce equal amounts of punishment on their kids when perpetrating the same acts. Though parents cannot be forced to punish their kids the same way across the board, we should strive for a common balance so as to teach them the importance of equal accountability instead of how to get ahead of the judicial system.

Overall, we as a society and future parents and adults should strive to teach children to be responsible for their actions and to not place blame on others because they would rather avoid the consequences. To do so, we must set the example. Instead of playing the victim in a situation, stand for what is right, whether it includes you facing the punishment or just making sure someone else is held accountable.

Katelyn Moriarty is a political science sophomore

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