The Thirty Minute Blogger

Exploring Books and the Writer's Life, Faith and Works, Culture and Pop Culture, Space Science and Science Fiction, Technology and Nostalgia, Parenting and Childhood, Health: Physical and Emotional ... All Under the Iron Hands of the Clock and That 30 Minute Deadline

Thursday, January 7, 2016

What Gains Respect?

Let's look at a standard definition: respect: a feeling of deep admiration for someone or something elicited by their abilities, qualities, or achievements.

Respect is something that is earned. You cannot simply apply something, strap an object to your hip, or buy something and have respect garnered for you by others. If you want respect in your community, find ways to work with others. Find ways to reach out a helping hand. Go the extra mile for a suffering individual or group in your community. Stand up publicly for people who are being downtrodden or who society at large has written off. Assist the poor, befriend the outcast, work with the sick, the weak, with those who cannot defend themselves. Work with your family and friends to create civil society, which begins at home. All of these things, plus a generous spirit, a strong sense of humor, and great hope will, in time, allow you to earn the respect of others.

I was surprised the other day to hear an open carry enthusiast state that a gun on the hip would gain him the respect of his community. I'm sorry, that is not so. Carrying around a means of self defense that may cause great harm to you or others, when others do not know you, your training, or your intent ... and definitely not your mood or sanity on any given day ... is far more likely to garner you suspicion or fear or resentment ... or have you facing the gun of a criminal who appreciates the gun you are carrying and wants it for himself (this happened the other day). Again, respect must be earned. Respect comes through service, where one shows one's qualities and abilities. People will appreciate the achievements you gain on their behalf. That's real respect.

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