Can’t Get No Respect

Since it is almost mom’s day lets talk about moms. That’s what I will be addressing this Sunday. We could talk forever on this one. But I want to zero in on one aspect of motherhood in particular, that I will discuss Sunday, and that is the issue of respect for authority. More exactly why is there such a lack of respect for authority today and what part do moms play in teaching their children respect for authority.

Let’s be right up front with this one. There is not an abundance of respect for authority in our world. And rightfully so in some cases. When we see a dozen police officers kicking the living day lights out of three men that were stopped on attempted murder suspicion, like happened in Philadelphia this week, it is hard to respect them or their actions regardless of the possible guilt of the three suspects.

When we read of teachers engaging in or taking sexual advantage of students, it’s really hard to respect them. When we learn of “respected” politicians engaging in the same crimes they have devoted their lives to cleaning up, I don’t have much respect.

But with all the extreme exceptions aside, why is there such a void when it comes to respect in our society? Where does the development of respect for authority, in whatever the setting, begin?

More specifically, what part do moms have in teaching their children respect for authority. And how do moms best instill this in their kids who will eventually determine the direction of society?

I would be interested in your insight, observations, discoveries and even opinions.

By the way I found this link to be a very good discussion of the lack of respect for authority in kids. Check it out.

Endless problems result from lack of respect for authority, but in the final analysis I believe failure to require respect for authority from our children undermines how you want to teach a child to respond when their Heavenly Father asks them to do something, and that is our ultimate goal, isn’t it?


4 thoughts on “Can’t Get No Respect

  1. Why do we have a lack of respect for authority? Steve, I’ll try not to ramble but here goes:
    1. Parents, too many, are too busy trying to be friends with their children instead of parents. My dad grounded me for incorrect actions and stuck to his punishment. Then, he’d spend what felt like hours lecturing me. I am glad he did that for me even though I couldn’t wait for it to be over when I was young.

    2. Listen even to the politicians-everyone should be on the same level. The playing field should be equal. We were created equal-what we do with ourselves from there is the beauty of the US (while it lasts…). But, with kids being paid to go to school, everyone getting a trophy just for participating, red ink being banned in schools because it’s ‘traumatic’ to students, repeatedely being allowed to retest until you pass, etc. is only teaching kids that nothing has to be earned. Why try? Where’s my reward?

    3. We’ve lost the concept that respect should be earned based on one’s actions. Listen to kids and even adults-‘why are you disrespecting me?’-when you question their inproper actions. Again, see #2, respect apparently should be freely given out to all, and one no longer has to put forth an effort to earn it through their actions.

    I’ll stop for now, but it is disgusting at times. People leave their carts in the handicap space in the parking lot instead of walking three spaces down to a cart corral. Businessmen are on the cell phone in the bathroom (whether at the urinal or in the stall). Parents let their kids run crazy in restaurants because ‘it’s cute.’ GRRR!

  2. My initial reaction was exactly what Gabe wrote, so I had to think again…I will only add that with the increase in divorce over the past two decades, parents have lost alot of respect from their kids…absentee fathers have contributed to a lack of respect for adults…and way too much media glamorizing kids being disrespectful…but to better address your actual question about what role do mothers have….I’d have to say less and less…and its not necessarily moms fault…when dads are absent mom’s have to work outside the home…back in the day when mom stayed home, we had more kids like Ritchie Cunningham and me! 🙂 MOM’s are SO IMPORTANT! Happy Mothers Day!

  3. I can understand how leaders don’t live up and earn our respect, but what in particular I have a hard time with is when the leaders that screw up (because hey, I don’t know about you but I screw up… a LOT) and get knocked down a notch or two in our trust and respect of them don’t admit it and ask for forgiveness much.

    Seriously as a parent, I’m always telling my wife and my kids that I’m sorry and to please forgive me along with something more. I want them to know that I don’t intend to do what I do a lot, but that when I do, I can and should say I’m sorry and to ask for forgiveness and to pray for help. Because if it were up to me alone, I sure wouldn’t be where I’m at. Praise God for *that*!

  4. Compare scenarios: A. Godly mom + Godly dad = mom able to easily teach respect for dad and he teach respect for her. Each easily pattern respect for Heavely Father. B Godly mom + ungodly dad = mom struggling to teach and gain respect. Heavenly Father can step in and reward but He has to “break the mold” established by the ungodly dad to assert true pattern and the godly mom’s teaching is crucial. C. Ungodly mom + godly dad = chaos in God’s miracle pressure cooker a.k.a.The Family Unit. Respect is a fundamental part of maintaining civilization and even desiring civilization from generation to generation. we’re reaping the harvest from many seasons of broken families. Government steps in and says “it’s ok, you don’t need anyone but me and WIC” Society steps in and says “its ok, everyone in the family should have a different name and goal” Next thing you know…anyone with a standard is “a hater” even if that expectation is out of love.

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