Are we living in an age of disrespect and total disregard for those in authority over us? It would seem that many feel that they are “owed” something. As a teacher in a middle school, and prior to that in high school, I have frequently heard teenagers say, “My mama told me I don’t have to respect no one if they don’t respect me…”
Unfortunately, many of my students were either coming out of jail, on their way to jail, or had parents in jail. Some of these kids were allowed to do whatever they wanted at home and the end result was a more-than-rebellious teenager.
What kind of a parent tells their child to respect others only if they respect you? When parents allow their children to do as they please; trouble is on the horizon. When a society teaches disrespect to those in authority, it’s going to be a chaotic society. Too many parents are so busy with their own lives they forget to make time for their children. And many of the parents I have encountered are as rude and disrespectful as their children.
Have we become a narcissist culture? Disrespectful adults raising children results in a disrespectful, narcissist culture full of children who have zero respect for those in authority. Take the surge of police killing for example. Too frequently we read of police officers being killed by angry citizens, including retired police officer, Deputy Bill Myers.
Deputy Myers went back to work so he could earn extra money to spend on his granddaughter, including taking her to Disney World. Myers was shot in the back while delivering a domestic violence injunction. Myers was, by all accounts, a very good man. He was someone who was there to help where and when there was a need–yet he was senselessly murdered by a coward.
In South Carolina an officer was shot as he responded to suspicious behavior at a local mall. His murderer ran away on foot.
Another officer was shot in the back, execution-style, as he was pumping gas in Texas.
These are just three samplings of what has happened over the last few years, and in particularly since the riots in Ferguson, Missouri. Protestors were chanting derogatory comments about the police, including “fry the pigs…”
In New York when two officers were murdered sitting in their car, protesters were shouting, “Kill the cops!” And their sentiments were encouraged by Al Sharpton and Bill de Blasio.
So who is responsible? Usually this type of extreme violence comes from the top. Obama should accept responsibility for creating much of the divisiveness in our country, including the problems between the community and the police department. Rather than saying brutal murders need to stop, Obama promotes and encourages his racially divided, anti-police agenda. When Eric Garner and Michael Brown were killed, Obama had the opportunity to unite the country and approve the investigation into the killings. Instead, he exploited the anger of black Americans by responding,
“I think Ferguson laid bare a problem that is not unique to St. Louis or that area, and is not unique to our time, and that is a simmering distrust that exists between too many police departments and too many communities of color.” Obama told reporters December 1st. “The sense that in a country where one of our basic principles, perhaps the most important principle is equality under the law, that too many individuals, particularly young people of color, do not feel as if they are being treated fairly.”
Why would he say that? Obama was the one person who could have made a positive change, but he chose not to.
In fact, from the very start of his presidency Obama has seemed bent on racially dividing America. In 2009, Henry Louis Gates was arrested after a diligent neighbor reported that she saw “two black males with backpacks on the porch” with one “wedging his shoulder into the door as if he was trying to force entry.” Apparently Gates’ front door was jammed and he was using his body weight to push the door open. When police arrived, Gates initially refused to come out and talk to the officers. Obama decided to weigh in on this event commenting about how the police, “acted stupidly”. This comment went viral and parlayed into what has exploded into an anti-police and racially divided movement and Obama never expressed regret about his comments.
When the youth of our nation see the president showing such disrespect for law enforcement, and are seeing violence-inciting groups commanding respect by people like Al Sharpton, what are they to think? Especially if they are hearing the same thing at home from their parents? How will the anti-police violence end if people are encouraged to keep it going?
As a show of respect, I encourage everyone to tie a blue ribbon around your mailbox, a tree in your yard, your car antenna, and show the police in your community that you care. Despite the divisiveness coming from the White House, Americans should value and respect all lives–including the ones whose job it is to save our own.