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Tolerance for intolerance

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Sometimes you hear words come out of a young person's mouth and you wonder where they picked "that phrase" up?

Harsh curse words, coming from the lips of a third grade child. Some racist or bigoted term popping from the mouth of a 12-year-old.

Where does it come from?

My six-year-old son walked in to my room the other night after playing outside with some neighborhood children. He stood in the doorway, looked us square in the eye and blurted out, "(Name deleted) called me a f****r."

I could only wonder what that child must be hearing in their home.

And while that's disturbing enough, I'm even more troubled by these young people who use derogatory racial slurs.

They weren't born with this kind of vocabulary. And most of this garbage can be traced back to the home or some influential adult who has been poisoning their minds with hate language.

All of it is a learned or taught trait. From foul or unacceptable language, to bullying and treating others poorly, these are behaviors that are picked up by model.

Where am I going with this? I'm asking you to take up the challenge I'm setting before myself. Control your words and emotions. Remember the little person standing within earshot or eyeshot is going to do what you do. Ask yourself, is what your doing something your want your child or someone else's child doing?

If not, then you probably shouldn't be doing it yourself.

I'm speaking from experience. There are times when I allow my emotions to get the better of me and react to situations inappropriately. I have been known to lose my temper and I have been known to use language which should not be heard. It's not language of racial inappropriateness, but I have used curse words which my children have heard.

So allow me to challenge you, as I have challenged myself, to clean it up. Clean up your actions and your words, and model an example for those impressionable persons around you, which will allow them to model acceptable behaviors for others.

This country needs some cleaning up, but it's only going to happen one person at a time. So I'll start with me. I suggest you do the same.


Comments
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I agree that we could all use some editing in our daily lives, but I always get a kick out of parents that blame everyone else when their child blurts out a curse word. I would be willing to bet that 99% of the time the child heard it in their own home 1st.

-- Posted by spencer lover on Sat, Sep 24, 2011, at 10:32 AM

I agree. Its disturbing to be shopping in a local store and hear a group of teens cursing. I did it when I was a teen but knew not to do it in public where everyone could hear me. That shows a lack of respect for others. I think one of the issues is tv and parents lack of control over what their kids watch.

-- Posted by joev on Wed, Sep 28, 2011, at 10:28 AM


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Randy Cauthron
One Man's Perspective