Playing By The Golden Rule: Something I Learned In Kindergarten

My niece is in kindergarten and just starting her school years, but I believe many of the lessons we learn in Kindergarten are some of the best lessons we will ever learn. The other day on the telephone my niece was telling me a story about a boy who called people names because he felt he was more "popular" than other people. Their teacher quickly set him straight and explained to him we should all treat each other with kindness and follow the golden rule. In other words, if you cannot say something nice you should not say anything at all. Some adults believe acerbic comments make them appear witty because they are able to put others down, but what does this accomplish? If you remember back to Kindergarten your teacher told you that it was never nice to put someone down just because you did not agree with their point of view. Life will be very dull if you feel you are the only person with a correct or the best point of view, especially if you must use put downs to achieve this goal.

"Hip" Does Not = Putting Others Down

Today I was reading the forums and I happened to comment that I liked someone's poetry and I only made this comment out of genuine sincerity. Well imagine to my surprise when someone pointed out I was ignorant for thinking someone wrote a nice poem, which is not something I ever expected to read on a forum. Yes this hurt my feelings and yes I think it was very pointless. Adults do not need to use the word "ignorant" to get their point across and maybe I am self-confident, but I consider myself to be an intelligent woman that has many valuable and important things to say. On this note I did not appreciate being put down and I am not begging for your sympathy, I just think it is very disrespectful to use such words such as "ignorant" towards other people. Also, I just wanted to point out I have noticed there is a trend on the Internet in general to put down others who do not express a popular point of view. Even if this person does not say things that you think are popular or hip, why do you have to put him or her down? In conclusion I just want to throw the idea out there of not using hurtful comments to get a point across. Everyone can agree to disagree without calling each other names or using put-downs.

Watch The Movie Pay It Forward

This movie does a great job of reminding us how to follow the golden rule. Trevor McKinney (Haley Joel Osmont) is a twelve year old adolescent that has a teacher (Kevin Spacey) who proposes the simple idea committing random acts of kindness without expecting anything in return. This idea takes off and people begin to "pay forward" random acts of kindness that help to improve the lives of those around them. I do not expect the world to become a perfect place, but each of us is able to control our actions within this world of ours. If you have never seen this movie I highly recommend it because it shows what the golden rule is all about.

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Comments 41 comments

TiffanyDow 8 years ago

I wish everyone followed this rule of thumb!

SweetiePie profile image

SweetiePie 8 years ago from Southern California, USA Author

I do also and I think it would make life easier. Just my opinion.

jacobworld profile image

jacobworld 8 years ago from Ireland

This will never happen LOL

SweetiePie profile image

SweetiePie 8 years ago from Southern California, USA Author

If you read my hub again you will see I said each of us can control what we do.  I am not saying the world will become perfect, but we can do our best to treat each other with respect.  Enough said :).

Rob Jundt profile image

Rob Jundt 8 years ago from Midwest USA

Very true. When asked what the greatest commandment was, Jesus replied, Love God and then love your neighbor as yourself. Easy to say, difficult to do. I appreciate your voice. Blessings.

SirDent 8 years ago

Very well said. Keep your chin up. I believe the forum post was made only in jest.

SweetiePie profile image

SweetiePie 8 years ago from Southern California, USA Author

Perhaps it was, but the jest just went a little too far. Thanks for stopping by SirDent :).

SirDent 8 years ago

I can understand that even in jest we all can go too far. Now where's my apple butter bread?

SweetiePie profile image

SweetiePie 8 years ago from Southern California, USA Author

Thanks for making me smile SirDent :). Here is the recipe I found for the apple butter bread:

SirDent 8 years ago

Thanks, but I thought you might bake me a pan of it. :P

SweetiePie profile image

SweetiePie 8 years ago from Southern California, USA Author

Sure I can do that if you like :).

SirDent 8 years ago

I was only kidding. Would be hard to get it to me fresh you know. :P

SweetiePie profile image

SweetiePie 8 years ago from Southern California, USA Author

I know LOL. I got you :).

SirDent 8 years ago

Yes, you got me alright. If you really like poetry I have a few written on hubpages.

solarshingles profile image

solarshingles 8 years ago from london

SweetiePie, I love this hub. I think every one should have seen this video! I really am sorry, to not having many more so passionate school teachers as it is presented in this wonderful video.

ahmu profile image

ahmu 8 years ago

hey sweetie nice hub u make i like it soo much

Eileen Hughes profile image

Eileen Hughes 8 years ago from Northam Western Australia

What was the old saying sticks and stones will break my bone but names will never hurt me.

I believe if you cannot say something nice then SHUT UP. The world is changing so much that there is no respect anymore. What is wrong with the human race. I try to put comments on the hubs of people who put comments on mine.

Sometimes I probably do not put good enough comments simply because I do not know quite what to say. But I still reply in kind with at least saying. Very interesting or helpful etc. etc Surely anyone can at least say something nice.

It costs them nothing, except a few seconds of their life. Wake up hubbers and do your bit to support the others.

SweetiePie profile image

SweetiePie 8 years ago from Southern California, USA Author


Thanks for pointing out that it costs nothing to be kind, I wish everyone lived by this philosophy.  I always appreciate your insightful comments.


Yes the movie Pay It Forward has many inspirational scenes and the world would be a better place if we had more teachers like that.  I recommend watching the movie if you have never seen it because there are many truths in that film and it is not as chessy as some think it may be.  I truly believe everyone of us is capable of random acts of kindness each and every day, even if the world never becomes a perfect place.  Thanks for commenting.


Thanks for the comments sweetie.  Always appreciated.

JazLive profile image

JazLive 8 years ago from Decatur

Let's face it parents, a lot of the things we were taught as children still has "core value" but today's children are lacking a lot more than old fashion "common sense" - the best way to deal with today's youth is to participate as much as you can by volunteering. This is to witness and learn how youth interact with one another. Volunteering parents' objective is not to raise someone else child; but to witness the environment to help ones own child cope with their environment.

You will be surprised as to how immature a lot of the instructors are. Many of the most immature instructors also do not have children.

I am the blended mother of three adults with nine grands and one great grand; I have two adult children; two grands and a minor (high school junior).

My spouse and I had to change a lot of rearing applications with our minor for his generation is a lot different that that of his older brothers and sisters. He is a very decent young man; however, both my spouse and I are constantly learning new things about his generation that keeps us in awe.

I love our son's expression of "spiritual run" - that's what he does when he's in a situation that he knows will not work in New Jerusalem (our expression for Heaven)

SweetiePie profile image

SweetiePie 8 years ago from Southern California, USA Author


Thanks for sharing your perspective. I enjoyed reading about this.

William F. Torpey profile image

William F. Torpey 8 years ago from South Valley Stream, N.Y.

The Golden Rule, SweetiePie, is a wonderful philosophy to live by. Unfortunately, there are many who put themselves above all others. Those who disparage others reveal their own insecurity. Personally, I don't let them get me down, rather I feel sorry for those who fail to see that life is much too short to behave poorly. Your video is very inspirational. If only we had more teachers like that!

Seabastian profile image

Seabastian 8 years ago from Raleigh

I learned the same things in kindergarten and also was fortunate enough as a child to be taught this with some coherence by parents,teachers,TV and most other major cultural influences at the time.

Today children have so many conflicting examples it makes it more difficult to convey a convincing value to a code of conduct. One value they all seem to yearn for is to be "cool"

 One thought may be to demonstrate how cool it is to be in total control of your thoughts and totally confound the thugs and jerks in the world. The really respected martial artists never lose their cool and are unfailingly and in many cases excessively polite. The whole idea of jujitsu is to take an attackers move and make use of it to make them look foolish. A little verbal jujitsu with the idea of taking a crude verbal insult from someone and use of a measured politeness to make the attacker look and feel foolish might appeal to kids of all ages.

SweetiePie profile image

SweetiePie 8 years ago from Southern California, USA Author

Fascinating comparison between jujitsu and general human interactions. Thanks for adding something new to the discussion.

stephhicks68 profile image

stephhicks68 8 years ago from Bend, Oregon

Sweetie Pie - You truly are one of the sweetest hubbers here. I enjoy your thoughtfulness and am glad that you published a hub on the simple ways we all benefit by living by the Golden Rule. I really love that movie Pay it Forward too! All the Best! Steph

SweetiePie profile image

SweetiePie 8 years ago from Southern California, USA Author


I think you are one of the sweetest people on Hubpages also. Thanks for stopping by and leaving your wonderful insights.


Thanks for adding some important points to the comments. Maya Angelous is one of the best women writer of our time, so that quote from her is a great piece of advice. Thanks for stopping by.

Ananta65 8 years ago

I ask myself: “would I be offended if someone else would say that to me?”. Treat others the way you want to be treated yourself. So I support your golden rule.

There is one thing to be said, however. My resilience may be bigger than yours (or anyone else’s for that matter). So a remark, that I may find completely innocent may upset you and vice versa.

Needless to say that terms such as “ignorant” are out of line, of course.

SweetiePie profile image

SweetiePie 8 years ago from Southern California, USA Author

Thanks for sharing your wonderful insights Ananta.  I have thought about it and the remark may have been said in jest, but I wanted to convey to everyone that we should all try to be considerate for one another.  Whenever I read online of someone using certain words or even just assuming a superior stance I sort of want to point out that this is not necessary.  However, lots of things said and done probably are just in jest and not to be taken seriously, but I have seen a lot of people hurt by misunderstandings that could be avoided.  Sometimes these people are not even hurt, they just get mad and make more personal attack in reply.  Personally I would never do that, but I hope maybe this hub will help at least a few people reconsider what they say or type to others. 

Ananta65 8 years ago

Mind you, I agree we should be considerate. But when reading a reaction, we should also keep in mind that a comment may not be intended as offensive as it appears. People may come across as meaner than the really are. Communication is a two-way street. Both sides should be considerate :)

SweetiePie profile image

SweetiePie 8 years ago from Southern California, USA Author

That is true also.  Nice new picture by the way. The hub was about more than just that comment though. It was about the Internet and life in general. Thanks for sharing.

Sally's Trove profile image

Sally's Trove 8 years ago from Southeastern Pennsylvania

People who put others down are looking for attention. The best thing I can think to do is to ignore them, thereby preventing them from getting the notice they are looking for.

Here on HP, I am mindful that any response I make to a jab thrown at me is likely to raise either that person's hub score, or the hub score of the hubber who "accepts" the comment into a hub. Why should I make comments when doing so contributes to their increase in hub score? That would be rewarding them, wouldn't it?

One last thought...I have, we all have, limited energy. We are not here forever, and we can't do everything while we are here. Why waste energy fueling the rude fires of a crude person who lacks empathy and basic human respect by engaging with this person, when we can be directing our energies to the things and people who will make a positive difference?

SweetiePie, excellent hub, thoughtful comments, and a wonderful video!

SweetiePie profile image

SweetiePie 8 years ago from Southern California, USA Author

Thanks for your insights Sally. I do agree with the points you have made here and thanks for sharing your insights.

marisuewrites profile image

marisuewrites 8 years ago from USA

People who step out of bounds either had a brain hiccup, or are emotionally and intellectually bankrupt. The person who had the brain hiccup will apologize, the others won't even notice.

Rudeness never wins. You were just as entitled to your opinion as they were theirs; for them to label yours is low.

Walk on by. I LIKE random acts of kindness. Good hub, and smiles to you!

SweetiePie profile image

SweetiePie 8 years ago from Southern California, USA Author


Thanks for the nice comments and insights.

ripplemaker profile image

ripplemaker 8 years ago from Cebu, Philippines

Hi Sweetie Pie, there is indeed much to learn in kindergarten. In the preschool where you find me everyday, I find that to be absolutely true. Love your hub and the lessons contained in it. Keep on sharing your light and wisdom. :)

About-The-Home profile image

About-The-Home 8 years ago

Another relevant quote could be "Turn the other cheek"

cvaughn570 8 years ago

Hi Sweetiepie,

As for the forums, improved hubscore or not, I will not participate. Seems that every one of the topics I go and read there is a disagreement or someone putting another down. This type of thing is just not for me so I do not participate, I just read.

I love the movie Pay It Forward! It really shows that simple kindness can go a long way. I also love the way that you reminded everyone to remember what they were taught in Kindergarten, "If you can't say something nice, don't say anything at all"! These are words to live by.



SweetiePie profile image

SweetiePie 8 years ago from Southern California, USA Author


Thanks for stopping by and commenting.


Thanks for sharing your insights.


I think some forums are okay, I just will not participate if someone makes a rude comment. There is always a person that likes to fuel a fire for some reason and I just did not need that type of discord to make my day complete. Thanks for sharing you insights and stopping by.

quensday profile image

quensday 8 years ago from New York

Hi there :)

This is a very sweet hub. Kudos to you!

SweetiePie profile image

SweetiePie 8 years ago from Southern California, USA Author


Thanks for commenting on my hub. I appreciate it :).

wendi_w profile image

wendi_w 7 years ago from Midwest

Great hub ... I am not sure when common courtesy became uncommon .

SweetiePie profile image

SweetiePie 7 years ago from Southern California, USA Author

Yes I agree with you about how we need to find common courtesy again!

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