Playing for Points


It’s all about accumulation. It’s about besting an opponent. This is so widely symptomatic of the U.S. that it is a cultural motif.

I play Word Battle on Facebook and the moment someone scores above normal, players drop out. They will not continue the game if they cannot win.

In my profession as an instructor, again and again, students will give up after earning a below average score. They will not work to improve, to learn.

The last Presidential election resulted in one side losing. Rather than admit defeat, there is bluster and filibuster from the loser.

People have lost the innate urge to learn, to persevere, to stay in the game. It is all about win, the grade, the points.

It is so much more than a spirit of competition or an aim for perfection. It is a reliance on the external, the non-self. It is a disregard for time and practice. It is an absence of self satisfaction.

No wonder we fight. No wonder we cry.

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