respect your elders, and admire them… it is the begining of wisdom

By now you have no doubt heard about the mugger from New York City who brazenly attacks old women, one of which was 101 years old.  It has caused quite an uproar all over the country and rightly so, we have to be asking ourselves where has common decency gone?  Not that any mugging is acceptable, but to force your will upon these harmless individuals has got to be what one article claims was “the lowest of the low”.

It used to be that an elderly person was treated with dignity and respect but more and more I see young people behaving like they have no conscience, no morals, no reverence for the aged.  Our society puts no importance on it, our hearts and minds are not trained to recognize them as a valuable resource.  I wonder what the generation that comes from this one will be like.  Will senior citizens become likened to so much garbage,  only to be cast aside and forgotten?  Perhaps that time is already upon us.

We are talking about a generation passing that saw the Roaring 20’s, the Great Depression and World War II.  They saw the first movies being made, heard the radio play songs of the Golden Age, listened to music on 78 rpm records and saw black and white television in it’s infancy.  They knew of communism and McCarthyism, Korea, the Bay of Pigs and 3 assassinations of our nation’s leaders.  They witnessed the New Deal and polio vaccines, the Empire State Building and the Hoover Dam.  They even saw electricity, the telephone and mass transit become staples of the American landscape. 

Our grandparents and great-grandparents watched Bogart and Bacall, Hepburn and Tracy, Gable and Lombard and listened to Frank Sinatra, Benny Goodman, Glenn Miller and the Lennon Sisters.  They watched Joe Louis beat Max Schmeling, they watched Jesse Owens win the Olympics, they watched the incredible Jim Thorpe play football and John Glenn circle the earth.  They cheered one and all with the voice of their generation, one that certainly mattered… a generation that persevered and came off victorious. 

They saw all of that and so much more…  now are they to be reduced to brutalization by some cowardly crack addict walking around in a man’s skin wasting the air that he breathes?

We are shocked now, but will that wear off?  We are outraged now,  but will we soon become complacent?  I hope not.  But change begins with you and me.  We have to teach ourselves and our children that when we treat others and particularly the elderly with respect we are in turn respecting ourselves and our heritage.  As the Bible says, “it is the beginning of wisdom”.  We can’t tolerate the belittling of the human family, because really… we are all brothers made from the same stock.

I hope we will take pride in the elderly and renew our affection towards them.  I hope that our society will view them as national treasures, time keepers from an era passing too quickly by.  I hope there is a renewed sense of pride and accomplishment in our senior citizens, a geniune warmth in their reflection upon the rest of us.

 … and I hope they catch the bastard that did this shameful thing.



11 Responses to “respect your elders, and admire them… it is the begining of wisdom”

  1. babychaos Says:

    That’s pretty gross.

    I’d reckon it’s drugs or its some kind of perv. We had something similar in the UK about 10 years back when some guy started raping old women. They caught him and of course, he was completely barking and hadn’t been taking the tablets so they locked him up in a high security mental institution and threw away the key.

    I guess there have always been sickos but with modern media we get to hear about more of them, more often.



  2. Sonia Says:

    I use to think I was the only one in this world that thought the elderly are treated with disrespect.

    I was raised to respect my elders, even when I didn’t agree with what they were saying. I see the way teenagers today treat the elderly and it sickens me. So when I see teenagers do the opposite, when I see teenagers doing the right thing, it gives me a sense of hope that all is not lost.

    I think about when I become an elderly citizen and sometimes it frightens me. But I know I raised my daughter well and she knows that without our elders, there’d be no young ones.

    I hope they catch the creep. I’d love to serve on that jury.

  3. Yabo Says:

    We are the last generation to grow up without knowing many of the conveniences of today. We didn’t have computers, cell phones, mp3 players, etc. Personally I think we are raising a bunch of pansies these days. They don’t know how to respect themselves enough to talk, dress and act with dignity. Why should they? We live in a time where people think that because you’ve spoken over the internet you can now enter a relationship. We are becoming more and more socially distant. Education is a joke. If you haven’t lost your virginity by the age of 15, you’re a joke. Hell, if you haven’t had a kid by the age of 18 you’re the minority. Every generation wants to hurry up and grow up, but this new generation is the first to have everything on a plate for them and it is showing in their behavior. We have parents who think they do a service to their children if they are friends with them instead of being parents. Kids don’t need to have their parents act as friends, they need parenting. Not to mention all the political correctness crap we shove down their throats.

    You are right to worry.

  4. screque Says:

    Dropping by to say thank you for the comment. 🙂

    I have never understood the lack of respect for elders, despite my own personal mess ups myself. My grandparents, parents, and all the like have taught me some of the most important lessons I’ll ever manage to learn. I will never understand why the elderly are stereotyped as incapable, undeserving-when at one time, they were the reason this country ever got anywhere.

  5. chirchi965 Says:


    Thanks for the comment. That guy needs to do some soul searching really, but I guess in his desperation he had to attack the weak. I saw the video on the news here in Singapore. We had that once here, elderly people sometimes get beat up and get robbed. The fellow was caught and sent to jail. Its usually those who are not in a good state of mind who act this way, how do we end this kinda incidents from happening again…


  6. Cyndi Says:

    Very well put. You wrote that on Mom’s birthday–did you remember?

  7. Roberta Lipp Says:

    We are shocked now, but will that wear off? We are outraged now, but will we soon become complacent?
    Remember September 11th? Remember Katrina?
    Not as well as we all thought we would…
    Yes, it will wear off. Yes, we will soon become complacent. We pretty much already have.

  8. damewigginsoflee Says:

    This is one of the best posts i’ve read on wp. Really — well done, my friend.

  9. shame on america « Matters Of Little Consequence Says:

    […] random, personal, life, music) Today I read one of the best posts I’ve read on wordpress at Advantages of Mutual Respect and Fair Play where he approaches a topic near and dear to my heart — America’s disregard of our […]

  10. Emily Salas Says:

    As Roberta Lipp (above) says: remember sept 11? remember katrina? I recently made a trip to New Orleans and all this complacency was brought home to me in a big way. But, upon returning home, I had an experience that may put your faith back in our american youth.

    As my boyfriend and I settled in our seats an elderly lady came to sit in our row next to the window. We were in an emergency aile and I couldn’t help thinking this poor frail old woman couldn’t dream of lifting that door in an emergency. She stayed seated and frankly I didn’t think twice about it. Maybe it gave her comfort. Plus, I was there…a strapping young woman of 24. I would come to the rescue! As the flight took off she started talking to me a little. I was hung over from tequila the night before.(trying to make the transition into my birthday a little easier, though it probably would have been best to fly sober on my birthday) All I really wanted to do was sleep. Soon I found out that she was in her 80’s and hadn’t flown in over 10 years . . .so, she needed to talk to someone to calm her nerves. Ater a while I got over my moodiness and started talking to her about all the things she’s seen in her life. Her husband had died a few years back and she had been in New Orleans visiting her nephew. Apparently all the men in her husbands family were military men. She didn’t have many good things to say about the United States current state of affairs. She dreamily reflected on different things like her life on the farm, when television was new technology, traveling, her husband proposing on new years eve 1943. After a while I really got into the conversation and realized she was a well of information. I had a walking history book! When the flight landed we both had a few hours before our connecting flight and so I took that oppurtunity to invite her to lunch. Unfortuntely, my boyfriend realized there was a connecting flight that was leaving in 25 minutes and wanted to try and take that flight. She looked a little distressed and so I told Cameron to go ahead and see what he could find out and I would make sure she got to the right terminal. I carried her suitcase for her (she was out of breath carrying it) and walked her to the tram that would take her to her terminal. As I was trying to ask another woman if she would make sure she got to her terminal when the doors closed on me. “Shit!” came forth and the elderly woman started apologizing saying she felt like a bother. I told her: “That’s nonsense, don’t you dare say that! I am young, I can run if need be.” Then she said “I don’t know what I would do if it weren’t for kind people like you.” She got off at the right terminal and I took the tram back to find that there wasn’t enough time to get our luggage onto the earlier flight so we were stuck for three hours. I was a little sad I didn’t get to have lunch with her, but, also a little relieved to have the responsibility off my shoulders. Admitting this makes me feel awfully guilty, but then, who in this day and age is willing to step outside their own little box of created reality to help someone else out? Let alone an elderly woman? So, I guess I’m not all bad, am I?

    One thing I realize now is, that I have my parents to thank. If I didn’t have respect for them, I probably wouldn’t have respect for anyone. . . probably not even myself.

  11. chrisfiore5 Says:

    thank you, emily… for remembering where you came from.

    love, Dad

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