Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Are Ee Ess Pee Ee See Tee....

   RESPECT. Like the title of this post, for some people it seems like a foreign language...some lost ancient or newly discovered alien language. Some people have no clue what respect is and therefore don’t know how to give it or can barley understand when they receive it. It’s a shame really...but not nearly as tragic as those that know exactly what it is, and simply refuse to show it due to an obvious character flaw. This may be a minor issue to some, but I can guarantee, with certainty, that it’s a very big deal for others.

   A Pandora’s Box of definitions is opened up when searching for the meaning of the word “respect.” I was genuinely surprised to see whole websites dedicated to defining every meaning and form of the word...since it has so many. This just further validated the confusion the title of this post creates. As is my way...I have added the links to these and other reference materials concerning the meaning of respect below. 
   In our everyday usage and common meaning of respect, it seems we mostly mean a state of being courteous and well behaved when interacting with other people. Being courteous does come up within the meaning of respect, but most people, when asked how does someone get respect...give the overwhelming answer is that it is earned. If respect is to be earned, then how does that apply to the various forms and situations that we apply it to?
   Respect your elders: They have lived a long time and gone through much. Show them respect because they have earned it through living longer...and presumably going through more than you.

   Respect your parents: The went through a lot to have you...(a lot of fun in the beginning), and sacrificed to provide for you. They have earned respect by being the very reason you are here.
   Respect your boss: No, not really...but respect the position they hold within the environment you work in because they (presumably) earned that position of authority over you through hard work and meeting the criteria for holding that position. I did say “presumably”...
   Respect people: The general practice of being courteous to everyone unless you are otherwise given cause to act differently. Being a human being that practices this earns one the right to receive this in return...after all, respect is mutual. 

   Respect yourself: Arguably the most important of all...and quite frankly, you owe it to yourself. If you haven’t earned the respect of yourself, you probably haven’t earned the respect of others.

   These are probably the most common forms and applications of respect in our modern society and don’t seem too terribly difficult to grasp in my opinion. However, before I’m accused of leaving out another common form...let me just say that I could have written the entire post on this next one...

   Respect women: This one was already covered under “respect people”...except there is a lot more to this particular issue that has more to do with the interaction of the differences between males and females than just common courtesy. This is especially true when a female is inserted into a predominately male environment expecting equal treatment from men that practice inequality with every passing lecherous thought. The problem is so entrenched that the question has become “why men don’t respect women”....and this attempt to answer: is very interesting.

   I think the best summary for this, since I could truly write another post entirely, is to treat women as you would wish your mother or sister to be treated, treat all people as you wish people to treat you...and treat yourself like the most important person there is. When all this is forgotten, things get...interesting, but not in a good way.


  1. Thank you for posting this. Respect really has become a lost art and we need to get it back asap.

    1. I agree with you Jamie. There are many things we could do without to make the world better...respect is not one of them.