Alexandra Giordano ‘16 – Since we have been old enough to tie our own shoes, parents and teachers taught us the value of respect.  “Treat others the way you want to be treated,” is a common, and forgotten, saying that everyone has heard hundreds of times. We are told this phrase is something we should live by, yet overtime, respect has lost important value.

As a high-school student, I experience the lack of respect from my peers on the daily.

It no longer surprises me when I witness another student call someone a name directly to their face, or overhear a group of boys speaking derogatory terms about the last girl that walked by.

Is it because we have always been told to stick up for ourselves? Or because our favorite rapper said those same words about a girl in his newest song?

Economic status, gender authority, race, and religion, can all play prime roles in disrespect to others. But in addition with today’s lyrics, reality TV shows, and social media, the lack of respect is bound to happen. Us teenager’s don’t want to face this fact, but pay just a little bit of attention, it’s happening.

“I think that twenty years ago you didn’t have other distractions,” Mr. Couch, teacher and coach said. “Students made eye contact, whereas today students focus on some type of an electronic device. I do believe that chivalry like opening up doors for others and saying “mam” and “sir” was definitely more present back then.”

The advanced technology today; texting, Twitter, Instagram. The way people communicate has changed greatly since the time our parents were teenagers. There is nothing wrong with change, but it’s time we start to think about the social consequences that come along with this convenient technology.

Girls–think about that boy you want your father to like. What’s something you would want him to say?

“He’s a respectful young man,” would be the best compliment.

Boys–think about that girl you want your mother and sisters to approve of.

Being told that she “respects herself,” and is “polite,” would be the exact compliments you want to hear.

Compliments. In today’s world, being respectful, is just a compliment, and rarely given out. Twenty years ago, teenage boys and girls were expected to be nothing more than respectful.

“I think that respect has changed in America for the worst,” Brad Tanner ‘16 said. “Kids talk to their parents any kind of way they want, there’s really no punishment behind it besides the parent’s screaming at their kids, it’s not teaching them how to be respectful.”

Think about it. It’s not uncommon for your best friend to tell you about the argument she got in with her mother before school, and for her to make it seem like the disrespectful things she said were “funny.”

Or the time you were sitting in class and the “troublemaker” mouthed off to the teacher.

Or the other time you were sitting in class not paying attention, talking to your friends while the teacher was teaching.

All of these simple, little affairs may seem so unimportant. But the truth is, they’re disrespectful, and we don’t even realize it.

Teenagers apart of the current generation are not careless and completely rude. It is certain that a majority of the time, there is no direct harm in the things we say, and done by the ways we act. Respect is one of the most important qualities a person can have. Yes times have changed, but I truly believe that we should never stray away from the respect that stands as tradition. It is time we start realizing our disrespect, and showing some respect.

 

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