Friday, July 8, 2011


What ever happened to role modeling? How can we expect our youth to see integrity and honesty as something to emulate if no one around them exemplifies it? Is it any wonder our moral standard has sunk so low it is unrecognizable?

I remember the days when certain topics were taboo around children and truck drivers apologized for slipping out an impure word or two in front of children and ladies. 

Not so today. As I left the store to walk home, three young men were outside, their language colorful—not merely speckled, mind you, but bright-orange-foul.

I stopped, turned and said in a relatively calm manner, “Please don’t use that kind of language in public. Not everyone likes to hear it.” My mind said, “Didn’t your Mama every wash your mouth out with soap?”
I turned around again and headed back toward home. Then it dawned on me.

I wasn’t in rural America anymore.

These kids might have been thugs for all I know.

Everyone in the south seems to carry heat. Not me, though. I hate guns.

Oh well. I refuse to be a prisoner of fear.

Those boys needed a reminder, to at least rethink their language choices, and Grandma gave it to them.

I heard growling behind me. Turned again and the boys scowled at me grunting inaudibly (at least it wasn’t distinguishable swearing). I was glad they used their facial expressions as a weapon rather than taking out a Glock.

Grandma got one last word. “Now grow up.”

I’ll probably never know if my stab had any impact. Maybe that’s why we’ve reached a point where we have become too tolerant. It takes energy and courage to speak up for values. It’s easier just to ride the tidal wave of obscenity.

I went on my way and only looked back once to make sure they weren’t following me. I hate for them to know where I lived.

How did I feel?

Free to some degree. One woman congratulated me for speaking up to the young men.
Mostly, I felt sad. Sad that our country has deteriorated to the point our ears are assaulted at every turn. Not just our ears…all of our senses are bombarded with less than wholesome stimuli.  I felt saddened that there is so much disrespect for one another and for ourselves, that an older lady like me seems to be the only person shocked by this lack of civility.

Have the morals of the young squelched those we oldsters used to hold dear? Where is our example? I can’t even go into the McDonald’s without hearing the grossest of conversations…from what my friend calls the ROMEO crowd…raunchy old men eating out.

Sometimes I feel like I’m standing on the beach trying to hold back a tidal wave. But if you’re reading this, I hope you’ll think about whether you’re the wall or the ocean? 


Patricia PacJac Carroll said...

WE certainly do live in a different time. Sad commentary on the state of our country. Prayer is the only answer. Our nation is sick in its soul and heart.

Good for you to stand up for decency.

Bonnie Doran said...

I cringe when I hear television and radio commentators using language that wasn't allowed several decades ago. I get mighty tired of it.