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Forum Post: Responsibility

Posted 11 months ago on April 29, 2013, 11:59 a.m. EST by cubedemon (185)
This content is user submitted and not an official statement

Thesis: Responsibility and accountability from an individual or group can happen if the responsibility and accountability is reciprocated.


Responsibility, according to the oxford dictionary means a moral obligation to behave correctly towards or in respect of. It also means the state or fact of being accountable or to blame for something. Accountability means required or expected to justify actions or decisions; responsible. In addition, it means able to be explained or understood. Transparency means easy to perceive or detect. Reciprocate means to respond to (a gesture or action) by making a corresponding one. Blame means feel or declare that (someone or something) is responsible for a fault or wrong and it also means to assign the responsibility for a bad or unfortunate situation or phenomenon to (someone or something). Moral means concerned with the principles of right and wrong behavior. Earn means to gain deservedly in return for one’s behavior or achievements:

How it applies to the legal system and those who break the law, social, and moral code

Responsibility and accountability from an individual or group can happen if the responsibility and accountability is reciprocated. In order for reciprocity to happen a society or an organization must have transparency to it. This means the social rules, moral rules and the laws in a given society or organization must be understood and accessible by all parties involved. The social rules, moral rules, and the law should have the possibility of being explained. If these rules or laws are neither explainable to, accessible to, nor understood by individuals or groups then how is it moral and how does this display correct behavior to make someone responsible or accountable? If most individuals do not understand the rule or law, the rule or law is not easily accessible, nor is it explainable to most individuals in a given society or organization then I have to ask how is it moral and correct behavior for this rule or law to exist? I have to ask this about college graduates.

Specific examples in the real world

College graduates

There are college graduates who are having problems finding and keeping jobs. From personal experience, I believe I can state why. There is an underlying assumption by a lot of college graduates that if one gets his degree there will be a job waiting for him and he will be able to slide right in. In this college graduate’s mind, there are jobs that only require the degree and these jobs are obtainable by all of those who have this degree. It is believed that the employers molded the college graduates into their respective organizations. In the college graduate’s mind they did earn the job. They feel entitled to what they believed they earned. It has been taught that one is entitled to what they work for and earn. They believe that their achievement of this degree earned them the job.

When these college graduates went to elementary, middle and high school they were told certain things or things were implied to them. For example, students were told that there were jobs that paid a good amount of money and all one had to do was go to college and obtain a degree. They were told that the employers molded them into their organizations. They were told or implied that there were training programs and they were mentored into their respective fields. Not only were they told in their school environments and possible parents but this was portrayed in movies, the media, and the press as well. The students were told that one can achieve his dreams if he believed hard enough and dreamed hard and long enough. The conditions that were told to college graduates over the years were false. Employers emphasize appearance, experience, social skills and personality as their key components to obtaining a job in our society. Employers do not want to train if they can help it. They want those with experience already and those who are molded.

Who was in charge of the graduate as they grew up over the years? It was the parents, the professionals, the media and press, the schools including teachers, counselors and administration, and every person who watched these graduates as they grew up. They all had a hand in telling them things which was not true or were only partially true. In effect, society itself is at fault. College graduates were expected to be obedient and to respect those who were in charge of them. This means children should expect to trust that what they are told is true and factual. There was no and there still is no responsibility and accountability from a lot of those who were in charge of the graduates as they were growing up. Part of accountability is that the social rules and standards should be easily accessible. The students, while they were growing up, had little to no other access to determine what these rules were besides those who were in charge of them. How is it morally righteous to make these graduates responsible and accountable for rules they did not know nor understand, did not have easy access to and was not transparent and is still not transparent? I believe this applies to autism spectrum disorders as well.

Autism Spectrum disorders

An autism spectrum disorder is a disorder that has these following traits. 1. Very literal 2. Has issues with non-verbal language like eye contact 3. Has issues with turn taking in conversations 4. Can be preoccupied with special interests

A spectrum means that it is a sliding scale and this disorder has degrees of functioning within it. There are some adults who are on the autism spectrum who were diagnosed until they fully grew up. Some did not get a proper diagnosis until they were middle aged. For some, it was not proper to diagnosis because some of the disorders like Aspergers was not added to the DSM until 1994. DSM stands for Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders. This manual has every disorder that psychologists, psychiatrists, and other mental health claim that exist. When they try to diagnosis a person with any disorder they refer to this manual and try to match symptoms for the criteria of various disorders.

As this website says (http://psychology.about.com/od/psychotherapy/f/faq_dsm.htm) during the time I was a young child they were using the reprinted version of the DSM-II. In the earlier versions, including the DSM-II, of the DSM all criteria for a particular had to be met. At the time, I displayed some of the criteria for autism but not all of them. I had an autism spectrum disorder called Aspergers but not the full blown autism. Because a patient had to fit in all criteria, Aspergers was not in the DSM, and autism was the only diagnosis that closely fitted me then there was no way to effectively diagnosis me. The doctors at the time did the best they could and said I had autism like symptoms and ADD with a narrowed focus. I am 33 now and was diagnosed with Aspergers at the age of 29. As a child growing up and through my teen and throughout my 20’s I did not receive the benefit of a diagnosis.

From my experience, most people will not explain the non-verbal social rules whatsoever. They will think that those who question them are obstinate. Others have run into the same issues as well and have a similar history to mine. When reaches adulthood, the brain is less malleable. Based upon this background, if the social rules can’t be accessed or not easily accessed by some people such as myself, if these rules are not teachable or not easily teachable by most except for professionals then how is it morally right to expect these people including myself to be responsible for following this social code and being accountable to anyone for inadvertently breaking this social code? If this social code is not transparent how is it possible for one to logically follow this social code? If obtaining a job requires one to follow this social code then how can one be expected to obtain a job and keep a job? How is one able to and expected to demonstrate responsibility and accountability by obtaining and keeping a job at all? If the professionals made a mistake are they not accountable to their patients?


In conclusion, responsibility and accountable has to have reciprocity. In order for reciprocity to take place there must be transparency and this means there must be understanding, accessibility, and teach-ability. It is immoral to make one responsible and accountable to something a person does not understand, does not have access to, and is non-teachable. Those who make these rules, laws and codes and expect obedience are morally obligated to give reciprocity because this shows their words are worth a grain of salt.



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