ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

An Argument for Manners

Updated on March 25, 2012

An Argument for Manners

Click, click, click sound the heals of my shoes. I’m late for work and rushing to catch an elevator to the ninth floor, but so is the gentleman already in the elevator and pushing the close button. Whoosh. The elevator doors slam in front of me. Obscenities held under my breath, I ask myself “What did you expect?”

Perhaps I dream to live in the society of Jane Austen’s prim and proper characters of Pride and Prejudice. Men hold the door. Men offer a hand from carriages. Unfortunately I live in a society where I often feel like the character Michelle Tanner from Full House putting her hands on her hips and uttering the words “How rude!”

When did manners become so terrible? How did we go from Gone With the Wind to Big Daddy?

Bad manners are rife in today’s society. From lack of consideration, workplace rudeness, bullying, classroom impoliteness, self-cynicism, and unethical practices, bad manners are affecting our health and the future of our society. Mark Twain explained, “Blame no one. Expect nothing. Do something.”

When did this steady decline begin? Throughout history morals have been pushed aside for the greater “good” of society. Take the example of women’s suffrage. Women with the goal of equality used shock tactics to attract attention for the movement. Women burning bras and a scantily clad lady liberty carrying the torch were just a few images portrayed by the media to encourage the women’s suffrage movement. So in order to promote women’s rights to vote, women threw manners and self-respect out the window. To this day women wear shorter skirts and lower cut tops to attract and keep male attention in the hopes of being promoted or rewarded for a job well done. In a society in which women still earn seventy-seven cents to a male’s dollar it is no wonder why women use these tactics to even the playing field.

Another example of a current decline in manners is seen thru the invention of the Internet and cell phones. These inventions have allowed society to distance themselves from their fellow men. This introversion allows people to lose all conscience thought of manners and respect. How many times have you seen a person in line at Starbucks on a cell phone completely ignoring the barista while continuing their phone conversation?

In addition, how many times have you texted or used your cell phone while driving? Alarmingly, according to recent polls by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, one fourth of all accidents in 2011 were caused by the use of cell phones.

How do we stop the steady decline of manners? Take responsibility for your actions. If you have done something impolite then apologize and correct your actions. Once we correct our own actions it is only then that we can help correct the manners of others. Do not forget that correcting a person’s manners in public is rude. Pull them aside and inform them they have committed a social faux pas.

In close I offer some simple manners to adopt into your everyday lives. By observing these manners we can, as a society, lift ourselves out of decline and ease our social interactions.

  1. Hold the door for those entering behind you. Do not let it slap the next person in the face. This act offers a sign of respect.
  2. Do not laugh after passing any sort of gas. You have offended my womanly sensibilities and my nose. If you have passed gas (belching or farting) please excuse yourself. You have disturbed the pleasant surroundings.
  3. Reply “please” and “thank you” to show you acknowledge another person as more than an object.
  4. Remove yourself from a seat on public transportation if a pregnant or elderly person seeks a seat. This is a sign of a good deed.
  5. Always be on time.
  6. Do not loudly carry on cell phone conversations while in public. You are disrupting the social environment.
  7. When parking do not take up more then one space. Allow plenty of room for another person to enter and exit their car. This act offers a good deed and avoids scratches and dinks to each other’s vehicles.
  8. Always clean up after yourself. Leaving a mess is unacceptable. Littering is appalling. In addition, do not spit in public.
  9. Use the phrase “excuse me” when you have been rude. This act offers a sign of respect.
  10. Practice the golden rule. “Do unto others as you would have done unto you.”


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • profile image

      meegs supergirl 

      6 years ago

      I try to keep my manners every day, not everyone does and I feel it is a shame. Technology is not to blame, technology can be "switched off".

    • Rosalinem profile image


      6 years ago from Nairobi, Kenya

      Yes its just sad how people have become so unconcerned for others to extend a helping hand. Well written voted it up and interesting.

    • EstellaGrace profile image


      6 years ago from New York

      Good Point!! My mother and I were shopping in Boston a few years ago, and we bought WAAAYYYY too much stuff, so our hands were very full, and the bags were heavy. We were on a bus trip so we had to carry everything, and on our way into the next store, a man walked out, looked at us, and let the door go. I stopped him with a polite "excuse me" that came out a little more like "hey, jerk!" and kindly requested that he come back and open the door for my mother and I. He did it, but he was obviously confused by my request. Jerk!

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      You need to move to the country! While not perfect, most men have much better manners in the country in terms of how to treat a lady. People in the country seem to be in general, more friendly and more polite. People in the city drive me crazy- but then again I am a country girl at heart. :)

    • LightInDarkness profile imageAUTHOR


      6 years ago from Smyrna, Tennessee

      Thanks Sarah. Manners are so important and I wish more people had them. Maybe we can change the world. :-)


    • SMD2012 profile image

      Sally Hayes 

      6 years ago

      Great hub! Voted up! The not holding doors one bugs me the most. How hard can it be to extend two or three seconds of your time to let the person behind you in?

      Welcome to HubPages! - Sarah


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)