A recent Rasmuseen Reports Survey said 69 percent of adults across the nation said people are generally becoming ruder and less civilized.
Other poll results had 62 percent saying Americans were ruder to sales personnel than they were 10 years ago and, in turn, 57 percent saying the sales personnel were also ruder to customers than a decade hence.
So who do we blame? I have some ideas…
Technology for one. To me cell phones are one of THE greatest inventions. Unfortunately, they are also one of the rudest if one does not know anything about cell phone etiquette.
But really, do I need to site the obvious? Texting while you’re on a date? (Even ruder if the person you’re texting is someone else you’re ALSO dating)! How about those people who are talking SO LOUD on their cell phone in a public place that you know their whole history before you’ve gone to the check out lane! Texting while driving? SO RUDE (oh and it’s kinda dangerous!)
How about Reality Television. Could it be a major cause of Society Rudeness? Now, anyone who knows me knows how much I LOVE Reality T.V. Having said that, I would never, never, never act as rude as the cast of Jersey Shore, Big Brother, Amazing Race, Survivor, Real World…oh the list is way too long to continue. But isn’t the rude behavior what brings such big ratings? Of course it is! Jersey Shore only got noticed when Snookie got punched in a bar! Before that, the ratings were dismal! Last year my daughter went through a really hard time with some mean girls at school. She and I discussed that girls seem so much meaner then they were when I was young, and her answer was that kids now believe the behavior on Jersey Shore is normal and acceptable!
Another thought I had is our society seems to be leaning more and more toward entitlement. Think about the woman who sued McDonald’s a few years back because she spilled hot coffee on herself. She felt she was “entitled” to all that money that she did indeed win! Personally, I think she was entitled to a cup of hot coffee, which she got! So sue ME!
Tiger Woods felt he was entitled to be with all those women. Elin then felt she was entitled to his millions. Guess they both got it right.
Can anything be done in our society to curtail the rudeness? How about confronting the guilty party?
According to the survey I mentioned, only a slight majority of those surveyed – 51 percent – said they have actually confronted someone for the person’s rude behavior in public.
A full 44 percent let it go without comment while 5 percent said they were “not sure” if they’ve ever said something about another’s uncivilized actions.
Should we be letting it slide? Confronting the rude behavior in an equally rude manner may feel good, but it also brings us down to the other person’s level.
Perhaps the best method for dealing with rude behavior is to counter it by being sweet, dare I say sappy and as polite as one can manage!
For example. You hear someone talking really loud on a cell phone while you’re trying to enjoy a dinner conversation at a fancy restaurant. You could say something like “It’s so sweet of you to want to include the entire restaurant in on your fascinating life, but if you could just take it down a couple notches I’m really trying to enjoy my own conversation and dinner! Again, thanks for thinking of me though!”
Okay, maybe thrown in just a bit of sarcasm.
I’m actually a pretty positive person (in fact my nickname to many of my friends is “Pollyanna”). I believe that this rude behavior isn’t something that will stick around forever. I think we can get back to being a society that has more patience and is kinder to one another.
We know it’s possible. Just think…in what had to be the rudest behavior of all…extremists attacking us on 911, in the face of such a sad, awful tragedy, we were kind to each other and took care of each other.
Let’s not wait for another tragedy to start to be kind to one another.
Do you have a “rude person” story? Did you confront the person? Love to hear about it!