I started my day yesterday by watching, or to be more truthful, listening to the Today Show. My TV serves more like a radio than a television since I, like the rest of the world, am constantly multi-tasking. At any rate Matt Lauer announced that he would be interviewing Whoopi Goldberg about her new book on the lack of civility and the increase of rudeness in today’s world. That got my attention. I stopped what I was doing and actually watched.
The title of Whoopi’s book is “Is It Just Me? Or Is It Nuts Out There?” What a great title. I was ready to hear more. I was totally in agreement with Whoopi when she began talking about the discourtesy of people using cell phones and the general lack respect for others in our day-to-day encounters.
Then Matt felt obliged to ask her about one specific point she raised in her book. It was a point he took issue with. He even asked permission to read from the book so he would not misquote her. He proceeded to read the page where she said that it was extremely rude to call people “dumb” or “stupid” but perfectly fine to use the “f” word. At this point both Matt Lauer and Whoopi Goldberg have my complete focus.
Did I hear that correctly? Certainly I had to agree that it is inappropriate, unkind and harmful to call someone “stupid” or “dumb.” I do not agree that use of the “f” word is acceptable in any situation. Have we become so immune to obscenity that we can accept that word as innocuous and part of polite vocabulary?
In my opinion, it is a totally unacceptable, rude and vulgar word that has no place in a polite society. How disappointing that Whoopi would condone and even promote its use. How many people, who saw the interview and will read her book will believe that because Whoopi said it is okay to use the word, will now feel completely justified to speak to others using such language?
The English dictionary is full of so many words that allow us to express our thoughts and feelings that the use of obscenities has always been an indication of a limited mind as well as a limited vocabulary.
Whether you are in the business world or going about your everyday life, good manners, proper etiquette and the rules of protocol, all dictate that we express ourselves with courtesy, caring and respect for others.
Is it just me?
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Since 1996, countless people have benefited from her wisdom through keynotes, seminars and conference breakout sessions. Her Southern charm and sense of humor have made her a sought-after speaker and consultant.
Based in Savannah, Georgia, Lydia is available for national, regional and local speaking and training engagements. She has suitcase; will travel.