A couple of days ago I was reading through one of the blogs on MSN. This particular blog was discussing whether Huckabee should drop out of the race. The interesting thing was not what each blogger had to say about the situation but how rude people were to one another just because they had differences of opinion. Last year during March madness I had a similar experience in which fans started out explaining why they thought their team would continue to the final four. But that didn't last long, soon it was nothing more than a bunch of mindless bashing of one another. There were only a handful of bloggers that wanted to have an intelligent conversation on the outcome of the days games. Ok, so it's a chain reaction. One person says something that irritates someone else so that person has to say something irritating back and so on. I guess I could live with that if that were the only place I see this kind of behavior, but unfortunately if you stop and look around you it doesn't take long to notice that there is something within our society that is becoming extinct. Yep, right up there at the top of the endangered list is "respect". From the person in the car behind you that starts frantically honking and yelling if you don't take off the second the light turns green to the person that hands your value meal out the window in which you respond "thank you" and they respond "no problem." No problem? What kind of a customer service response is that? It makes me want to put the car in reverse and back up to the window and apologize for any inconvenience I've caused them and assure them it won't happen again. What happened to, your welcome and have a great day or thank you and please come back? In all fairness they put up with their share of disrespectful people, too. And that is my point: if respect isn't taught then it can't be learned and if it isn't learned it can't be practiced and soon it has disappeared from existence.
This small but very important word has been thrown aside to the point that it now has very serious consequences within our society . Children are being brought up in homes where the only time the word is heard is when it is in their list of spelling words for the week. The number of parents that don't have time to even talk to their children let alone take the time to instill in them something like respect is growing at a rapid rate. Even those parents that try and raise their children to have respect for others have an uphill battle. And while we get all up in arms over the violent video games and movies what about the way politicians treat each other? What are they teaching our young people when they, the future leaders of our country, can't even show respect to one another? Domestic violence and child abuse has reached epidemic proportion. Our prisons are full along with our juvenile facilities.
What makes a student decide that he/she has the right to walk into the classroom and end the lives of their classmates? What kind of a grandmother along with the mother stops feeding and caring for her disabled child and instead stands back and watches as day by day the child slowly starves to death? Why would a mother wrap her baby in a blanket and then set the blanket on fire? And finally the one that still keeps me awake at night wondering how a step-dad along with his buddy brutally rapes his 9 year old step daughter, strangles her, and then disposes of her like she is nothing more than garbage! The sad part is the warning signs were there they just fell below the state's guidelines of abuse. But that subject deserves a blog of it's own.
Such a simple word yet the impact of it has lasting consequences throughout our society. But it's not too late. We can turn the tide of disrespect and teach our youth how to live together instead of teaching them how to live in a world that includes a final destination behind bars or coffins.