We live in a day and age where we want everyone to feel accepted. We want no one to be upset, feel left out or excluded, but is this logic beneficial? My argument is no, not at all.

I have a niece that is 6-years-old and is just finishing the first grade. She is fascinated with learning and wants to learn how to read more than anything, so she doesn’t have to wait for her mom to finish the dishes before she gets to hear “Cat in the Hat” before bedtime. Every day after school she will come home and open a book and start sounding out the words, memorizing the combination of letters and phrases, and her practice has paid off. While she can’t read anything too elaborate yet, she can get her way through her favorite Dr. Seuss books just fine.

Last week, she had her first spelling bee at school. She knew it was coming up for a whole week in advance, so after school, she practiced even harder than before. Her teachers gave them a list of words that they could potentially be asked to spell, and she studied them all by herself.

She ended up winning second in the spelling bee, but when the teacher awarded the participants, the entire class received the same award–a plain blue ribbon they all pinned on their shirts and wore the rest of the day.

Now this story may seem pointless, because they were just kids, but I think we see this sort of thing play out every day. The fact is, though, in life there are winners and losers. In life, everyone will be upset, feel left out or excluded at some point. Sugar coating this reality is doing nothing but creating lazy snobs who feel like they don’t every have to put in an effort.

But it’s not their fault. Why should they try if in the end if they receive the same blue ribbon as everyone else?

I think we need to go back to the old-school system of raising our young people. If you work harder than everyone else, it should be rewarded. If you don’t work at all, you should get nothing, because that is how the world operates.