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June 16, 2011 9:49 PM Subscribe
What does it mean to "deserve" something?
posted by Pastor of Muppets to society & culture (36 answers total) 22 users marked this as a favorite
When we say, "You deserve to have someone who loves you for who you are" or "you deserve an honest answer" or "you deserve a chance to make a living" or "we all deserve to be treated equally" or any time we say "you/I/we deserve" something, what does that mean?
Does it mean that you have some kind of 'right' to that thing? In which case, who or what is supposed to enforce that? Is it just a case of "you (magic word)deserve(/magic word) it, so keep asking/trying/complaining until you get it?"
I'm confused by the use of this word and I'm not sure how to answer when someone says something like "You deserve better" or "I want X, I deserve it!" What does 'deserve' really mean, when used this way?