The subject of victimhood has increasingly become a staple in our political discourse. Many on the left claim that certain members of society cannot get ahead because they are constantly oppressed by white, Christian men. On the other side, conservatives argue that the left is encouraging a victimhood mentality in a cynical attempt to gain votes.
We throw the term around on a regular basis, but when do we stop to consider what victimhood mentality is? What does it look like? And most importantly, how is it damaging American society?
If we are going to curtail the growth of victimhood culture, we need to make sure we understand what it is, why it exists, and how we can eliminate it from our national psyche.
There are several definitions of victim mentality — but the simplest explanation is this: Victimhood mentality is a state of mind leading people to live with a perpetual sense that external forces are wronging them. These forces can include life events, one’s heritage, and other people.
When folks don the identity of the victim, they go through life seeing the worst in every circumstance. They adopt a mindset that tells them they cannot do anything to change their station in life because a particular set of circumstances — either real or imagined — prevents them from fulfilling their desires.
In the individual, victimhood mentality engenders a sense of resentment — and even hatred — towards those seen as oppressors. It can prevent people from pursuing their goals because they believe they are already defeated; they are unable to achieve success — not because of their own flaws or mistakes — but because this other, more powerful party is out to get them.
Perpetual victims seem unable to take responsibility for their actions, preferring to blame others. If they become depressed, it is because of someone or something else. If they fail to accomplish a particular goal, they blame the obstacles in their way.
Victims do not look inward and are unlikely to work to improve themselves, as they believe that the world will continually subvert their efforts. Put simply; they never acknowledge what they may have done to contribute to their circumstances.
Posted by Jeff Charles on August 1, 2018