Monday, April 2, 2012

Have We Really Become This Rude?!

One of the absolute best parts of working on House of Fifty mag is how I've had the opportunity to work with a lot of fantastic people! One of them is Mindy Lockard, of the Gracious Girl, a talented columnist and speaker on the topic of etiquette. I met her when we were both scheduled to do a segment for a local TV station one morning. When she introduced herself I immediately knew I just had to work with her. Stopping by her blog recently I saw her post below and she graciously has let me share it with you today.

Seriously, have we really become this rude? From what I see on a daily basis I suspect we have. Read on and tell me what your take on the topic is in a comment if you will...

From Mindy:

"This was sent to me last week by schools.com. It kind of makes me want to cry. You know, the ugly cry."

Courtesy of: Schools.com

"How is this happening and why is it that it’s the twenty-somethings that are bringing it back? I work with a lot of them, I am proud to say so. So let’s light a fire, people! Take back our honor and show the young ones and little ones what we are made of. We are so much better than this! I know it."

32 comments :

  1. Excellent post!! And I whole-heartedly agree. Sometimes I cringe when I see things out and about. Things are out of control on so many levels: people who don't RSVP, people who don't know how to use proper phone etiquette, etc. etc. So sad!

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  2. It amazes me how much swearing is on TV. Even on kid shows. I cringe everytime I hear "frickin". George Carlin must be rolling over in his grave.

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  3. It is so sad, I have noticed it big time with young people - manners have gone out the window. Will young men learn to stand up when a woman comes in the room or hold doors open? I doubt it. Its the end of the civilized era...I hope this will change!

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  4. It all comes back to parenting, I think, Janell. You can't complain about the television shows if you are letting your kids watch them. I once had someone tell me {years ago} that my son was too polite! Too polite! Of course, she was one of the rude ones talked about above. We were out to dinner with her and her husband one time and her rudeness to a waiter made me cringe. I told my husband after that I didn't want to go out to dinner with them anymore.

    Kids pick up on what they see and hear, so the parents have to set the example and then correct them when they veer off that path. Tell them why they shouldn't speak, act or write things and what the results of their actions do. That woman I mentioned, she is a doctor and unfortunately certain people just feel they are so above others that their condescending attitudes just come out in their everyday dealings with everyday people. It's amazing how great their kids turned out, but their father is the complete opposite of her. {BTW, they are divorced now!}

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  5. It's sad that manners have taken such a dive these days, and I'm wondering when swearing on tv and radio has become so accepted and "normal" - even during regular daylight hours!

    You can imagine my pride when I see my young sons hold the door open for people. I love it, and I think others appreciate it as well.

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  6. I agree with Kathy. Parenting is so important. Unfortunately the friends that children align themselves with have a big influence as well. I agree with the article, people do seem more rude and self-centered lately. I feel like I have to carry a sign around that says "you realize you're not the only person in the world, right?"

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  7. My husband and I talk about bad manners all the time! We're pretty young, 26, and when I look at people in my peer group I just cringe. And it's not just manners that are disappearing, it's overall decorum. People just don't care (for whatever reason).

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  8. I don't know that I agree that it all comes back to parenting. I know a brother and sister where the brother is the epitome of politeness, but the sister is mean, rude, hateful and uncomfortable to be around. They came from the same upbringing. How can you explain that? And I have visited most all of those cities and found just as many kind, helpful people as I have rude ones. Poor behavior has existed since the dawn of time, and I think common sense should tell you not to behave like that. But society, i.e. cell phones, do change us and thus our perceptions. We must adjust to those and redefine what is polite.

    And what if Tiger Woods had a piece of grass or dirt in his mouth? I'm not saying that he did, but I've been known to need to spit in that situation...

    Perhaps it is the number of judgmental people in the world on the rise.

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  9. Hmmm...I've lived in Dallas for a little over a year and I don't think people are rude at all.....granted my daughter is in a chuch based preschool but I think the manners I see in the classroom when I volunteer are alive and well. I agree that parenting and adult role models have A LOT to do with it.

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  10. I also disagree that things are this bad. I think to some degree it's a bit of a myth perpetuated by people who long for what looked like the perfection of another time. Language has definitely changed and words creep into the lexicon but that's not new. Just yesterday I sat in a parking lot waiting for my husband and watched 3 teenage boys hold a door open for a middle aged couple...not even an old couple but people in their 50's. I was so happy to see this and commented on it to my 14-year-old son who looked at me like I had 3 heads and he said, "yeah, I do that all the time". Manners are not dead but sometimes you just have to have your eyes open to see them.

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  11. Oh boy, so sad to hear my generation (the early 30s) Gen X is the main culprit. Myself included. I curse in public and self-loathe afterwards. I need to be way more cognizant of that. What I will not bend on, however, is being nice to the people you pass in your daily life, who serve you or help you in some way and those that you work with. Civility is what we have left, what we can control. I agree, we are much much more rude than ever before. Thanks for making this a whole post - the topic begs more facetime than we give it.

    Bethany
    www.PowellBrowerHome.com

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  12. I totally agree with the outcome of her surveys. I think it is so sad. We have a become a ME society and people are more interested in their little circle of property than they are of their fellow man. I think we become uncivilized when we stop caring about how others feel and are affected by our actions, we are well on our way, I am afraid, Kathysue

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  13. Amen!!! I don't even completely agree that it is the 20-somethings bringing it back. For example, I went to see the 10:25 p.m. showing of the Hunger Games. The theater wasn't full by any means but it was definitely 20 somethings in there with a few "older" people such as myself and my friend! It was the worst movie experience I have ever had. The couple behind us had their socked feet on the headrest of the seats right next to our heads and talked the whole time. A group of high schoolers (I would guess that was their age because surely 20 year olds wouldn't be THAT awful!) came in and laughed, talked, and cut up the whole time. We finally moved and then sat behind a two headed human. I have never seen a couple (they were definitely in their 20's!) sit so darn close in movie seat. Then she proceeded to talk on her cell phone!!!! She kept dialing numbers and the glare from the phone was right in our face! I feel like I missed the final battle scene as I was so distracted. I finally said something to her and so then she just turned her phone more towards the side and kept on calling!!! I didn't even mention the 20 year old mom with her 3 or 4 year old son and the grandmother. Hunger Games is NOT appropriate in any way for a little one and he seemed to have whooping cough as he hacked a lung up towards the end of the movie. I felt so bad for the little guy as we left the theater at 1:00 a.m.!!!

    As a former teacher, I feel like we are raising a kids who feel such entitlement. I worry so much about where we are headed as a society!

    Whew! Sorry for the major vent. I truly hope as a society that we can see this and turn it all around!

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  14. This post was really telling! I agreed with most of the statistics- it seems our manners are declining! But... glad to hear twenty-somethings like myself aren't afraid to confront people about bad behavior.

    XO,

    Sam
    www.ThePeakofTresChic.com

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  15. I have numerous concerns with this study and its presentation by schools.com.

    First, on a cursory examination, the science seems flawed. It's not actual measured rudeness; it's our perception of it. And the perception is really only valuable if we compare that to perceptions of civility and rudeness to other time frames, say 20 years ago and 40 years ago.

    Also, the top ten rudest tourist cities probably match up quite closely with the top ten cities that receive the most tourists.

    Additionally, the portrayal of rudeness statistics with zombie caricatures is jolting and unpleasant.

    Lastly, I don't know the Kardashian family or Kate Middleton. How do I know if they're polite or rude? If I form any personal opinion about whether they're uncouth or not, if I don't keep that to myself, then I am being rude.

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  16. Wow... good stuff! This may have been mentioned already and I'm sure that there are a million other contributing factors, but I think part of the problem may be a result of less face to face social interaction and more computerized means of connecting with people. And that's not to criticize social media or anything, just to point out that computerized social interaction seems to be more about ones self and less about others. And again, that's not to say that social media is all selfish in a negative way. For the most part it just seems that when we are online or on our phones, posting on facebook or blogger or whatever, most of it is about what we are doing, thinking, etc. I sort of think that the self centeredness that online social interaction cultivates is very easily carried over into the face to face setting. So I think the answer is to first realize our tendencies (not beat ourselves up overit, just simply realize it) and then focus on cultivating habits that promote the opposite (kindness, gentleness, patience with others, politeness, etc).

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  17. There are alot of things that bother me...but rudeness is definitely at the top of the list!
    I have worked very hard to raise my boys to be polite - even if they dont want to be at times - there is no excuse for rude behavior! I AM the mom who will call out rude people, especially in theatres, and my boys know it. It used to embarrass them a little, but now they appreciate it and will hopefully be confident enough to assert themselves in the future.
    And the whole cell phone thing...dont get me started! Pet peeve...talking on your cell phone while going through a check out line...HOW RUDE!

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  18. That's nuts! I'm all for the manners! Great post.

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  19. Great post and great comments! I agree with most every comment. While I think it's largely parenting (or the lack thereof), it is definitely also the influence of the friends (aka peer pressure), the overabundance of awful TV, the lack of face to face interaction and certainly a true lack of a little religion in the early years. I don't go to church myself but I did as a child and it instilled alot of the values that seem to be missing today. I also think that there are a whole new set of etiquiette rules that we haven't quite figured out (like cell phone, texting, tablet and other technologies that a lot of parents didn't have 'back then'), so it's like creating new rules.

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  20. This is so interesting to read about. I'm in Dallas, one of the cities listed, and I don't feel like it's a "rude" city. I do think that there's an emphasis placed now on children of being assertive and competitive that creates a less considerate society. It would be helpful, I believe, if parents would focus more on empathy and respect.

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  21. I love this and, sadly, think it's SO TRUE! I'm also of the early 30's generation and I'm constantly amazed by how entitled, rude, and inappropriate my generation is. The emphasis on "self-esteem" has gone too far and turned us into a "me" society that doesn't care about others and whether we hurt others, only what makes US happy. The service industry is the one that always gets me. I cringe at how rude people are to wait staff at restaurants. It frustrates me that people don't see that those people work their butts off and people can't even order politely with a "please & thank-you." I don't think anyone else would be appreciate being ordered around like that and treated that way at their job.

    And the under 30's list at the end of the post was great. I've been very impressed with every one of those people at one time or another for how sweet and respectful they are--people I would really feel ok about my daughter looking up to. But sadly, it's the Kim Kardashian's and Miley Cyrus' of the world that get all of the attention for being disgusting. And I don't think that it's just kids' that are looking up to these deplorable role models. I think sadly a lot of women watch shows like Real Housewives or the Kardashians and strive for that money & fame no matter the cost. I hope people like Taylor Swift & Justin Bieber become more common and bring us back to a little more common courtesy. I could go on (obviously ;) ) but I'll stop there. Great post!!

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  22. i have a 2 month old son and it's already on my mind how to raise him to have good manners. i think it's so important!

    and i have to say, deplaning ahead of others is such a pet peeve of mine!!

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  23. Such an interesting post! If I were to choose the most rude place I've lived, I would have to say Dubai - there may not be cursing, but there's generally no consideration for others at all. Loud cell phone use, cutting in line, tailgating and flashing headlights, being rude to service and sales staff and a blatant division of class - I've never seen anything like it!

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  24. Thank you for all the comments, I've really enjoyed hearing your varied perspectives. Gives me a lot more to think about. And as for the ghoulish graphics, I have to agree they aren't my favorite as well, but being geared towards kids - I know you sometimes have to make a real statement to get their attention.

    Here's to treating each other in the way we'd enjoy being treated ourselves.

    Janell

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  25. Great post - I think we are all exposed to so much through TV and social media that we have to see so many "celebrities" behaving so badly. Whatever you see over and over again starts to feel normal. I think we all have to do our best to pay attention to what are kids are exposed to, teach them proper manners and WE have to be good role models for them as well!
    -Shelley

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  26. Sad but true I have to say. It is a shame that manners are going away. I try hard to maintain mine in this fast paced world and to make sure my children are polite.

    Another lost art worth mentioning is a simple "thank you" note. I love getting them and love to send them even more.

    For those of us who weren't "taught" properly do you have any books or things you can recommend?

    Annie
    http://houseonrene.blogspot.com/

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  27. I was especially sad to see that my city (Phoenix) is listed on the rude map! :( Our family is nice and polite here, I promise! :)

    Annie
    http://houseonrene.blogspot.com/

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  28. This is a constant conversation in our home. I can honestly say that my number one pet peeve in the universe is rude behavior. I just don't understand it. It reminds me of the, "Don't yuck on my yum." We don't all have to agree or get along . . but politeness, please and thank yous. They go a long way.

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  29. I have to agree, but I am originally from NY and now live in Atlanta. Based on the fact that it was a travel a survey I am sure they were judging our airports! Being one of the largest and busiest, I am not shocked, but hope others see past that...southerners are not generally rude, quite the opposite actually!

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  30. interesting! (and more than slightly disturbing...)

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  31. I totally agree! Amazed daily at what I see and hear. I wasn't raised that way and am shocked when I hear things that I do. Great post Janell!

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  32. WOW - how sad!! How very extremely sad! For those of us who just read the stats of rudeness we have a big responsibility to continue with our kindness!! Hopefully we can change the world.........or least try to!!

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