The message read like a eulogy, when Jordan Hitch, co-owner of Chumley's on Bridge Street in South Dartmouth, announced the popular burger brasserie was permanently closing, in part because the Hitch family was "unable to find quality staff workers for this season."

What a pity, considering on September 28, 2020, their Facebook page said, "We had such a great summer and want to thank all our customers! Stay safe and healthy - looking forward to next summer!"

There's plenty of work but few takers, because, I believe, the government gave employees an overabundance of COVID-19 windfalls that are now backfiring badly for most businesses, our economy and this new stay-away-from-work attitude that threatens the workplace.

Have you ever heard the phrase, "To whom much is given, much will be required?" You can find reference to it in the Holy Bible or by watching a Spiderman movie that reflects this philosophy.

But I'm going to give it my own explanation. The more we've been given, the more we are answerable. In other words, the government made emergency funds available to support millions of workers hunkered down at home for nearly a year. You can say the American worker was spoon-fed and now finds it difficult to hold their own fork.

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In the meantime, those same workers are ignoring the other part of the phrase that says we have to be answerable for the money and benefits that was given to us. Being more answerable in this situation means just as we were given a bellyful of favors, it is our personal responsibility to give back to the employer, who is now the one in dire need.

It's an easy philosophy capable of restoring needed balance, but only if we all go back to work.

Phil Paleologos is the host of The Phil Paleologos Show on 1420 WBSM New Bedford. He can be heard weekdays from 6 a.m. to 10 a.m. Contact him at phil@wbsm.com and follow him on Twitter @PhilPaleologos. The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of the author.

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