Where Have All The Good Manners Gone?
Once upon a time, in the United States of America, children where raised to be respectful, mindful, productive members of society. It used to be that children where taught to say sir, ma'am, please, thank you, let me help you with that, no thanks is necessary, and all with a gracious smile. It used to be that no matter how you felt, you respected your elders. No matter how tired you were, you helped out around the house without mouthing off or muttering. No matter how mad you were, you stood up for your family if anyone else threatened them in any manner.
It used to be that dishonoring your family, or just embarrassing them, was a terrible offense taken none too lightly. It was once considered normal to commit random acts of kindness. Good Samaritans were respected and not ridiculed or sued. At one time, getting an education was paramount and behaving in an uneducated manner was simply inexcusable. Respect was at one time considered everything. You were nothing if your word could not be trusted. It used to be that living by the golden rule of 'do unto others as you would have done unto you' was just what you did, without thought or conscience effort.
In today's modern world, respect is a foreign word with no meaning. Elders are ignorant and get in the way. Technology is equivilent to holiness. It is the only thing worth worshiping. Sounding ignorant and refusing to acknowledge proper English is the popular thing to do. It is highly esteemed to dumb oneself down in an effort to elicit a sympathy appeal. The new generation expects respect automatically while expecting others to earn theirs. Brute force and ignorance reigns the day and it a scary prospect for our future.
People are too busy to go to church or do anything that involves quality time with their family in a wholesome environment. Parents are too afraid to discipline their children in the way that most of us were raised for fear of being blasted across the national media. Children are more intuitive than they are given credit for and notice these things. In the words of the bible, 'spare the rod, spoil the child'. In the words of Roosevelt, 'talk softly and carry a big stick'. These sayings are accurate and have produced hard working honest people. Today the line between discipline and abuse has blurred beyond recognition.
There is no one contributing factor to where the degredation of human morality and personal responsiblity has gone. It has become a ripple effect of this push leading to that drop and so on and so forth. Ever so slightly, generation by generation, our values have dissappeared. It is no longer safe to assume that the person rushing towards you with your arms full of groceries is coming to your aid. You can no longer let your kids walk around the neighborhood without parental supervision. Please has become gimme. Thank you has vanished altogether. There is no sir or ma'am, it's 'yo' or 'hey you'. Children are sassing their parents left and right and cursing is no longer considered offensive. Respecting all forms of authority is a throwback to days gone by. It is not 'cool' to be well-mannered anymore. I miss the days of yesterday.