We Must Stop Making Excuses if We Want a Better World

Depending on what side of the political aisle you adhere to, Jordan Peterson is either one of the most positively influential people in the world or a dominant feature of the evil patriarchy. His main fault? Helping people take more responsibility in their lives. No matter if you love him or hate him, Jordan Peterson is all about responsibility; not exactly responsibility to others, but being responsible to yourself. He makes it easier to do this by keeping things simple: do not compare yourself to others, be beholden to yourself, and try to limit the chaos and disorder in your life by taking care of the small things. In short, stop making excuses and control what you can. So try to control yourself, not other people.

This emphasis on controlling the controllable is a terrifying notion to many people. That is because “responsibility” is now the longest four-letter word in the American lexicon. Responsibility–and more specifically, personal responsibility–is terrifying. If you eliminate all the outside excuses and instead concentrate on what you control, then that means when you fail, it is your fault. People love the idea of personal responsibility when things are going well, but when you start failing, personal responsibility becomes an accusatory finger aimed directly at you.

This philosophy–to avoid making excuses and to take on more responsibility–is similar to that of many other notorious and new age self-help gurus such as Jocko Willink, David Goggins, and Tim Ferriss. Instead of shying away from personal responsibility, these men–and many women who preach the same–stare responsibility in the eye and say, “bring it on.”

Not-so-coincidentally, this perspective has helped loads of people (both men and women). Instead of people shirking away from the responsibility of fatherhood/parenting, getting healthy, and putting things in order, this eons-old philosophy is now regaining traction in the modern age. Mostly because it hinges on a very simple premise; stop making excuses. If we all stopped making excuses, the world would be a much better, safer, and peaceful place.

When You Stop Making Excuses, You Start Improving the World Around You

Some people are self-starters who need no help in bettering themselves. For these people, self-help gurus are no help at all. These people get out of bed, go workout, and are killing life while others are still asleep. The common thread among these people? A lack of excuse-making: there is no “My body is sore,” “I’m too tired,” or “I don’t want to do it.” You never hear these people utter these complaints and use them as an excuse to get out of work. It just doesn’t happen. But avoiding excuses is not just a net benefit for individual gain, it is a net benefit for society as a whole; if everybody followed that credo, the world would be a much better place.

The problem is, the modern American/progressive philosophy is all about excuse-making. Why do the poor stay poor? Why is there a fatherlessness epidemic in America? Who is to blame for the inordinate amount of crime and violence coming from the black community in America? Why did people storm the capital on January 6th? Why are terrorist organizations allowed to indiscriminately shoot rockets at civilian populations in Israel?

For each one of these questions, there is a built-in excuse that never tries to solve the question. For each one of these questions, we create reasons to excuse the reality that taking personal responsibility would go a long way towards fixing the issue. So how do we stop making excuses? By no longer making excuses! This is not some trick or turn of phrase; if you want to stop making excuses–and make the world a better place–stop making excuses.

The Solutions Are Right At Our Fingertips, We Just Have to Grab Them

Why do the poor stay poor? Because–according to the left-leaning Brookings Institution–poor people do not do three simple things: graduate high school, get a job, and avoid having children outside of marriage. That is it! Getting out of poverty and joining the middle class really is that simple. But simple is scary. If it is really that simple, then the only person to blame if you fail is yourself. That is supremely scary. But scary can be good, scary can be motivating.

Want to help eradicate the fatherlessness epidemic in America? Men; wear condoms. Women; buy condoms or don’t have sex with a guy if he isn’t rocking protection (and I don’t mean the 2nd Amendment variety). That is all it takes! When you use condoms correctly, the chances of getting pregnant are a mere 2%.

That “85% effectiveness” number Planned Parenthood likes to put out? That is for people who don’t use condoms correctly. A possible solution? If you are not smart enough to use a condom correctly, maybe you are the type of person who should not be procreating? If you have sex and get pregnant because you did not use a condom correctly, guess who the responsibility falls on for that one? Still yours.

How to Stop Making Excuses? Stop Excusing Crime and Violence

Maybe you do not like the rates of black-on-black crime or violent crime perpetrated by members of the black community in America. What is the solution? For members of the black community in America to stop committing crimes. Stop making excuses for those that commit crimes. Why did some people storm the capital on January 6th? Was it because of something Trump said? Or was it because some people decided to storm the capital? Why did some listeners storm the capital and others just go, “Nope, not doing that?” Because some people acted as responsible adults and others acted like entitled, anti-American brats.

Was it proper for BLM to riot for a full year? According to left-wing politicians, definitely. But was it in reality? Absolutely not. Those left-wing politicians were simply making excuses for people to riot because they supported the riots. But the BLM riots and the Capital Hill riots were evil, anti-American violent demonstrations perpetrated by criminals. Any other description or suggested reason is an excuse.

Stop making excuses for criminals when they act like criminals! All you are doing is making it more likely for criminals to commit more crimes when you make excuses for criminals committing crimes. Worse, you are cultivating violence and punishing those who abide by the law; the exact opposite of what you should do if you want a better–and safer–world.

This is Not Complicated, This is Basic

The same holds true for the Sheikh Jarrah and Jerusalem Day riots or any of the terrorist acts committed by Hamas, Fatah, and Hizbollah-inspired people. Are you angry at Israel using stun grenades and water hoses against rioters at Al-Aqsa? Maybe stop excusing people rioting on Judaism’s holiest site and Islam’s third-holiest site. Do you not like it when Israel targets terrorists? Stop making excuses for terrorists when they try to lynch people on the street. Do you hate reading about Palestinian children dying when Palestinian rockets fall short of their intended target (Israel)? Stop making excuses for terrorists when they shoot rockets at civilian populations.

If you truly want a better world. If you truly want a safer world, stop making excuses for people when they commit acts of evil. This is not graduate-level stuff here, this is Basic Rules for Life 101. When you appease people, they do not moderate. The world learned this–and immediately forgot it–with World War Two. The Obama–and now Biden–administration should have known this with Iran. We saw it last summer with the BLM riots and how they flourished because they were allowed to; they flourished because we made excuses for them.

The inverse was true on January 6th; the Capital Riot was widely and vociferously condemned and ended quickly. The government went after the perpetrators to make examples of them. It worked. But Palestinians can continue to fire off rockets with almost worldwide impunity because the world keeps making excuses for them. If you want the rockets to stop, the answer is not to condemn Israel, but to condemn the people firing off rockets. The great and scary thing about personal responsibility is this; if we want to make the world a better place, it is well within our abilities. All we have to do is stop making excuses.