I am seventy six year old and I have been exposed to a lot of human behavior. Some of it I approved of, but most of I it do not. In all of my years growing up and experiencing adulthood, I have notice a lot of changes with human behavior and what that hurts me most is the continuing lack of respect for other human beings.
There are many examples of this but I believe it all begins with language. I have worked a lot of my life in fields that were dominated by men, such as auto mechanics and railroaders. Few women were around. These men used language that you would not believe. They were the most foul mouths and obscene speaking people you would every meet, and I joined them.
As a young man, even I heard words that I had not heard before. However. This language was heard only in the work place. Visiting their homes, you never heard any of this kind of language. If a woman (or child) or even a stranger would show up at the work place, all foul language would stop. This was due to respect of others.
The use of foul language seemed to grow gradually. First some “Realistic” movies add the language to their films to make them more grown up. This didn’t seem too bad. They stared with less non abusive words such as “Frankly, Scarlet, I don’t give a damn.” It became so popular that they put it in many films. Soon it was old stuff, so they add a few more words, like “Bastard, etc. It made them money. People love it. It was like they talk sometimes every day.
This exploded until today; there are no words that are not use on our entertainment. Children always mock adults and their TV and movies did the same. Even pre-school movies and shows today use language that would be unaccepted a few years ago. I have watched children shows for pre-school children on TV and in many of those movies they delight in devoting many minutes about passing gas (farts). That is today’s comedy for children.
Foul language only does one thing and that is to show disrespect to the person you are directing it to. That is bad enough, of course, but it perpetuates lack of respect for all other things. When you lack respect for others, it turns up in all of the rest of your behavior. Hence the increase on young children showing disrespect for their teachers and other adults.
One instant I would like to relay to you. An elderly may was in a doctor’s waiting room. A young couple came in (probable pre-twenty) and sat across for him. They immediately stated “necking”. They got more amorous as time went on. Not to be crude, but they were “feeling each other up” and putting on quite a show. The people in the waiting room were getting very nervous, but no one wanted to say anything. Finally, the old man had enough. He got up and proceeded to “chew” out the couple for being inconsiderate of all the others in the waiting room. The young man argued that they were in love and just showing their love for each other. If others didn’t like it, they didn’t have to look. No one in the waiting room came to the old man’ defense. The old man just said, “Maybe you should show some of that love for your fellow human beings.” This couple showed no respect for anyone but them selves.
This phenomenon has caught fire. It is everywhere you look today. Children do not respect their parents, their teachers, adults or even each other. Our leaders and politicians are using “gutter language” to show they are like the rest of us. Celebrities think nothing of using words that a decent person would not want to use in front of their mother. Yet they broadcast it to everyone in the world.
I am a firm believer that if you don’t respect others, you cannot respect yourself. Just look around, you will see what I mean.