The rude society-A A +A
Friday, July 27, 2012
ARE young Filipinos becoming rude, and the future that our kids will inherit would be a rude society?
To be sure, Filipinos presently count among the least rude countries for foreign tourists, said a poll done by Skyscanner, a leading European travel site. We trail in third place behind the Brazilians and the Caribbean islands in courtesy.
Yet, I see an unraveling of those polite social relations every day. We could wake up some day together with the French, Russians, British, Germans, Chinese, Americans, Spaniards, Italians, Polish, and Turkish, whom Skyscanner classified as the rudest in that order.
Disagree? Just take a jeepney and observe. How many of the young passengers say “Palihog” and “Salamat” when they ask (demand?) you to pass their fare to the driver? They assume that it’s your job and obligation—not a favor given—to comply with their demand.
How hard is it for these people to utter the words “Thank you” or “Salamat gid” as an expression of gratitude or politeness, in response to something done or given? It’s their obligation to pay for the ride, but they have to ask their co-passengers to pass on their payment.
Of course, there are still many more Filipinos who say “Palihog” and “Salamat gid” to a favor given. But they’re slowly losing to rude people.
Or where a cellphone ranks above the persons we meet face-to-face over dinner or even in church? The humans among us often take a backseat to a device.
If the call is that important, can we say “excuse me,” either to those in front of us or to the other party at the other side of the line?
I remember one time an international conference held in Bacolod eleven years ago. A top official of the Canadian International Development Agency thanked the participants.
Her reason for the “thank you?” The Filipino participants disabled or lowered the volume of their ringtones while the conference was in session. And for speaking in English.
How about riding escalators? Eight out of ten hog the whole sideway, instead of occupying the right side if they stay stationary. They deprive those in a hurry of a free space to pass through.
And speaking of queues, how many females cut into lines, expecting preferential treatment over the men? I know, I know, I’m being unchivalrous according to our macho society who treats women akin to the elderly, weak people who need assistance.
However, I stand for gender equality. When I was in British Columbia and Alberta, Canadian women felt insulted that Filipinos gave them preferential treatment implying that women belong to the weaker sex.
I don’t blame the kids for their discourtesy. I blame their parents who probably taught them that the world owes their family a favor for their mere existence. Most likely, the kids were never taught how to appreciate favors. After all, I see the same attitude among many adults.
Amy Lyman, in her blog The Trustworthy Leader, wrote “Why say ‘thank you? We learn to say thank you to those who offer us help, who give things to us and who provide guidance or support. Yet doing this at a young age is mostly because we are told to, not because we truly understand the power of saying ‘thank you.’”
I say, hold on to that power of expressing our gratitude to create goodwill. As Lyman said, “contributes to people sense that they are valuable members of the group and to their willingness to make future contributions that are of benefit to the group.”
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Published in the Sun.Star Bacolod newspaper on July 27, 2012.