Friday, October 12, 2007

Decency Where Has It Gone?


Where Have All the Manners Gone? Examples : Someone rudely interrupts you while you're speaking with someone. A colleague routinely turns up for work five or ten minutes late. A friend politely has a door open for them, and they walk past ignoring everyone in there path. Or someone signs at you as they talk on the mobile, people talking on cell phones or in public places in a loud or annoying manner (the worst of all). You notice how many coworkers fail to even say "good morning" when they walk in the door each day. Or you let someone through the check out before you and they don't say thank you ( true story). And you wonder: What's happened to polite behavior? Ordinary courtesy certainly seems on the decline. In an age where the standard of social manners has sunk to an all time low and we’re surrounded by the constant bombardment of bad behavior toward our fellow men and women, is it really any wonder that there are so many ill-mannered children? Or how about respect? Somehow, this precious and powerful character trait has eroded over time, so gradually that we have hardly noticed. This is something that is really bothering me. Is it really that much harder to be polite? Why must there be so many inconsiderate and RUDE people? A friend said to me that people are just selfish and selfishness rules out all decency. Mabey she is right. But I still think a smile, please or even thank you can go a long way. You can make someone smile which in turn will make you feel good to.Promoting polite behavior doesn't take much time or effort, but it can yield big results. Spread the message of polite behavior, and you'll gradually realize a whole host of benefits: improved communication, relaxed smiles and laughter, and a growing willingness on the part of the people around you to pursue other initiatives.

29 comments:

insanity-suits-me (Dawn) said...

Great post. I don't know where all the manners have gone either. I was taught to be polite and respect my elders. Taught my child the same thing. So what's changed? It's not a hard concept!

Emmy said...

It must be a hard thing for people to grasp. But I was raised with manners being a number one priority.Manners became something natural.

Stealth said...

I was raised in the south and we are taught propa manners from birth. Here in the Atlanta area, we have a lot of Yankee transplants. You can tell who they are because they don't thank someone for holding a door for them or bother to hold a door for someone else, they don't let turning cars in front of them when traffic is at a slow crawl and they won't give up their seat to a woman or elderly person on a bus. Ugh! Go back to New Jersey. Great post...

karen said...

I have a friend from back home in Mississippi (as south as the south gets here) and I had asked her a few different times why she didn't move. She told me a little story. She said she went into an auto repair store to look for a fuel injector solution (something you apparently use to clean your engine) and she was standing looking at the products. A gentlemen politely asked her if she needed some help (he didn't even work there) and went on to explain exactly how the products work and which might be best to purchase. She took the item to the register and no less than four men stepped aside to let her check out first. When she left they held the door for her. That is Mississippi and, boy, can I tell when I cross the state line every time I go home. Chivalry lives there, but so do a lot of other old ideas. I just wish we could keep that one and get rid of some of the others. It's a trade off.

Hope said...

Been on your site several times today. I love it! I posted the element test on my blog. What fun! I needed to put out something light and that was just the thing. Thank you !

Emmy said...

Stealth - Thanks heaps for all your support, it is always appreciated. I know what you mean, you just want to say grow up or get lost.

Emmy said...

Karen - Politeness is very rare and so is chivalry, but then as you pointed out some places are still repressed in there ways even though they have manners, I to wish we could have one without the other. There is no middle ground.

Emmy said...

Hope - Thanks so much for you comments and support. I to have visited your blog and put you in my blog links. Love your blog, I will be back for more. Thanks once again :)

Becky C. said...

Emmy, thank you so much stopping by. Now I am always partial to Aussie Girls--a country full of hot girls:)

But what I see here is fantastic!!!!!

~Becky

Emmy said...

Thanks Becky, you are always welcome

Graham said...

Food for thought. My biggest irritation is being interrupted while I am talking.Is what I am saying so STUPID that it is not worth listening to? I no longer try and analyse the dynamics. If I am interrupted I just stop speaking. End of communication!. This upsets people, but I do it on purpose.
Another manners thing. Table manners! That seems to be lost. I cringe when I see the "younger" generation eating their meals as if it is something from "Fear Factor".

Emmy said...

Graham - That is a whole other subject of annoyance for me to. I HATE people who want to talk but cain't take the time to listen. Or even be interested in what someone else has to say.

AmyMeacham said...

Your post describes exactly how I feel so often.

Emmy said...

Thanks for popping in. :)

adam said...

emmy,
some people will keep it to themselves. They just except the rudeness from other people.

It's good to voice out what you feel. Don't keep it inside you. Ignore certain people that put other people down.

love to read your post.

adam,
malaysia.

Emmy said...

Thanks Adam, and you are always welcome to visit. :)

Marcus Langford said...

Emmy,

Thanks for posting this because I often wonder why people find it easier to rude than polite.

I believe it boils down to one's rearing. I was brought up in a "Yes Ma'am" "Yes Sir" type of home; raised with Southern and religious-based manners. My parents raised us to have respect for everyone, especially those older than us. Unfortunately most people that are rude, are so because that is all they have been exposed in their lives so they live that way and pass it on to their children and so forth and so on.

All the work of improving the manners of people starts at home and from an early age on up.

'Mind Of Marcus' BlogSpot
The Mind For Evolution Is Here

moooooog35 said...

I notice this the most when I'm holding the door open for someone, and they walk right by without saying a word.

Typically, I'll issue the sarcastic: "You're welcome." Hoping they get the point.

Although, last week at a restaurant, this resulted in a verbal altercation with the rude bastard. He actually started an argument with me for calling him out on being such a rude jackass.

If it's rude to call someone a jackass, I guess I'm guilty.

Emmy said...

Marcus - I too was raised with manners being comment knowledge and common sense. People are in such a hurry they don't take the time to be kind. And I find rudeness takes more effort then a smile.

Emmy said...

Mooo - It is very hard to bite your tongue when rudeness is returned for kindness.

Agnes Mildew said...

Hi Emmy, thanks for coming by the blog. You are very right in your observations and the almost universal lack of common decency and manners these days. Although I wonder, though, if so many of us notice it, who are the actual perpetrators? Are we sometimes guilty of it? I also second Graham in that one of the rudest things somebody can do to another is to constantly interrupt them. It is bad manners and displays arrogance and ignorance on the other person's part. Really hate that!

Emmy said...

Agnes - Thanks for your comments and stop by again.

Windyridge said...

Here here! I've raised my kids to be very polite and have had lots of compliments thru' the years about their great manners. But you are so right. I had an experience today! People are so focused on themselves nowadays and I think the current technology has really contributed to this in a big way. It's too easy to tune out and it becomes a habit even when you are supposedly tuned in.

Emmy said...

Thanks for your input windy, I appreciate your comments. I totally agree. :)

MelissaLori said...

It's true, people are so engulfed in themselves, they take no notice of anyone else. I, too have raised my children with manners. Once, we were in the store and my son asked a salesman where he could locate a game, the gentleman asked if he checked a certain aisle and my son said "Yes Sir". The man laughed and said, don't call me sir, thats my father. I told him that I have raised my kids to use manners and respect their elders. He just looked at me for a second then smiled and said I was doing a fine job.

I think people are most rude driving, and road rage is HUGE here...

Emmy said...

I don't understand how people can make the effort to be rude when it takes less to be polite. Plus it feels good to make someone smile.

Flowers On A Friday said...

I heard the following one day a few years ago:

Woman: Where are your manners?!

Stranger: My manors? In Cambridgeshire and Hampshire. Why? Where are yours?

I know I shouldn't have laughed but I just couldn't help it. Plus he had just used some interesting compund adjectives in his swear-fest on his cell phone, which I was quite impressed with.

But, Emmy, I agree with you. I sometimes wish I could be rude to people who have been rude to me but, unfortunately, I'm too polite!

Emmy said...

Thanks for your input flowers, I agree.

StephenH said...

I agree with your blog. I feel that there are several reasons for this:

1) People working longer hours

2) Less family meals together

3) Etiquette is not part of the general ed curriculum in many schools

4) Breakup of the family unit

5) Corporate Greed and impoliteness and lack of competence in customer service.

6) Media makes entertainment over bad manners in TV, Radio, and Movies

7) Self Focusedness and Narcissism caused by "Generation Me"

8) Lack of formality in dress

9) Changes in technology

10) The culture is so lawsuit happy that it makes the simplest things so much more work

I am not from Australia, but in San Diego CA USA, and over here we have the same problem too.

Emmy, I would suggest you consider checking out the book "Generation Me" by Jean Twenge. You might also check out www.emilypost.com and www.operationrespect.org, too.