As I raise my child, one of the things that are important to me are manners. Growing up in the 70’s and in the South, we were taught to not only be polite, but to also be respectful of others. Now what I would like to know is what happened???
As I make my daily public transportation commute to work, I often see young people (high school, jr. high students) acting as if they’ve lost their minds! Can you say no home training??? From excessive foul language to the disregard of elders, I’ve seen and heard some things that have left me speechless. Being considerate and respectful (of others and of yourself) was very important when I was coming along. But what happens when the questionable behavior comes from an adult? Gasp! Yeah, you thought this post was about the kids, huh? Well let me explain… One evening aboard a crowded standing-room-only metro train, a very pregnant woman boarded with her family. Well it just so happens that Mama-to-Be landed right in front of the seats generally reserved for those needing assistance. Occupying those seats was an older woman and closest to MTB was a young business man (mid to late 30s). Well after a minute passed the older woman reaches past the young man (who is totally unmoved by the big pregnant belly in his face) and offers MTB her seat. I think we all stood there and gave him the evil eye to which he replied by faking sleep.
Unfortunately this is not the first time I’ve seen this exact scenario play out. There have been times that I’ve given up my seat to a pregnant woman while the men just sat there and looked. Mind you these are not always YOUNG men; some of these folks are well past grown, acting like they don’t know any better. Does home-training gradually fade away the older you get? Are we so consumed with ourselves that we really don’t care about what’s going on around us, or right in our face? If that’s the case, no wonder today’s youth behave the way they do – look at the parental example!
As my little one grows older I would like to teach her that respectable young men will in fact hold the door open for you, they will offer their seat to someone in need, they will respect their elders, they will come and knock on your door instead of pulling up and blowing their car horn for you to come out. And when dropping you off, they will wait to make sure you’ve made it in your home safely before driving away. Better yet, they’ll walk you to your door. (Although lip-locking on my front porch had better NOT be happening!) I would like to teach her these things, and I will, but I will also have to teach her the realization that many folks don’t do those things because they haven’t been TAUGHT to do them, or to expect those things from others. There was a time when this was the rule, not the exception. All I want to know is what happened???