Show some respect

graffiti.jpgI’m sure you’ve heard it and you might have even said it yourself.

“Teenagers have no respect these days.”

Is that really the case or have we forgotten our own teenage years? Are you a teenager? What are your thoughts when people make blanket statements like that?

Joan Grosser returned to the Morning Programme on 98.5 Sonshine FM today and we tackled the issue of teenagers and respect.

The Basis of Character – the quality of your character and that of your children is best exemplified by the presence or absence of three attributes: respect, honour, and honesty. These are action terms. Having an attitude of respect, honour, and honestly is not enough; there must be an ongoing demonstration of the three.

Respect, honour and honesty are critical fibres in the moral fabric of our being. To respect others is to honour them and to honour them is to live honestly before them. The parent’s job is to take the intangible concepts of respect, honour and honesty and make them tangible – to take their abstract meanings and make them concrete. – Gary Ezzo

If you’d like to hear this morning’s segment just click play on the audio player in this post.

I’d really enjoy hearing what you have to say. Is the perceived lack of respect just a problem for today’s teens or have we failed to model and teach respect? How do we show our children how to respect others? Is respect only something we display to those we feel have earned it or is it something deeper than that?

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About the author

Rodney Olsen

Rodney is a husband, father, cyclist, blogger and podcaster from Perth Western Australia.

He previously worked in radio for about 25 years but these days he spends his time at Compassion Australia, working towards releasing children from poverty in Jesus' name.

The views he expresses here are his own.

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  • It’s hard to judge just how much teenage behaviour has changed or worsened when we get so many “bad news” stories in our faces all the time – but if it was really as bad as Today Tonight and the likes claim wouldn’t there be constant looting in the streets??

    As for respect, I think it should be like the presumtion of innocence: you get it first up, but lose it if you’re proved not to be deserving. I think too mnay of us arrogantly assume that the people around us have to earn our respect while forgetting that the same must also apply to us. People who want you to earn their respect often aren’t worth the trouble.

  • So right. A big part of our discussion this morning was about respect being mutual. We may have different roles but respect nedds to be give and take regardless of our age or position.

  • I think the general lack of respect is a major cause of problems in society. The Mullaloo Beach riots for example, where some people pelted bottles and rubbish at 2 police officers, shows a disgraceful lack of respect. Even the road toll in WA shows a lack of respect for rules, safety, speedlimits, seatbelts (safety equipment) and the fact that cars are dangerous machines… and need to be treated as such.
    I try to live my life by ‘Peter’s 4 golden rules’. These are: “Respect, Safety, Lawfulness and Participation.” There’s an explanation on each one but I wont go into it here…
    I learnt these ‘rules’ in Queensland at an Outdoor Education Centre in Boonah where I did some training when I was a youth worker. I’ve ‘preached’ them around the country ever since. They’ve been stables in my youth leadership training seminars and my training manuals. They’ve featured at The Salvos’ Beyond the Classroom seminars. I’ve now started to try to teach them to my three year old son…
    Perhaps after Joan’s segment on Sonshine today I need to start teaching them to my 5-month-old daughter too 😉

  • There is no doubt, that respect in the home (and later it then involves the school) needs to be taught, expected and of course, demonstrated. There is no greater teacher than our example and testimony. However, when teaching and example doesn’t work on a stubborn young person, a child even, then and there is the time to take care of the issue. Often I see parents even laugh off the problem, creating confusion and the child is never discliplined correctly, and naturally never learns.
    Then, for some odd reason, parents of teens can’t understand what happened to their cutie, and start realizing, perhaps a little too late, there is no respect for their authority nor others authority.

    I think historically, this is something that has been gradually watered down in our societies – less and less respect in each generation.

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