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Good manners- On the road to extinction?

by Dr. Mandar V. Bichu
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Sorry’, ‘Excuse me’, ‘Please’, ‘Thank You’—are these words going out of the public dictionary? Is politeness going away for good? Are good manners on the road to extinction?
Looking at the contemporary behavioral patterns of children and adults, I have often wondered about these questions. I haven’t been to the rural areas for quite a while so don’t know much about the current social trends there but my city-life has certainly shown me one thing clearly-  slowly but surely, today’s urban people are forgetting or sometimes even actively rejecting good manners!
Just surf the net for an hour and you will come across thousands of rude, arrogant and obnoxious comments on major public sites. Most of the people writing them are hiding under the cloak of anonymity though! They will be writing as ABC 25 or XYZ 72! But forget these net-acts- even in real life people are often displaying the rude side of their persona without any remorse. Shouting at the top of the voice at the waiter spilling water in a restaurant or giving a public dressing down to the employee in front of his fellow workers are considered signs of being aggressive- being in tune with changing times. A simple social smile is becoming an obsolete trend! Being polite, being nice is being perceived as being weak and meek and today nobody wants to be in that category!
This rot begins right at the top and the parents are often responsible for passing on these behavioral patterns to their children. Far too much importance is placed on reaching the top first by shamelessly pushing and pulling those ahead in the queue! This success-at-any-cost attitude might very well propel you to the top but it would also leave you quite lonely there! After all, not everything in life can be calculated in dollars and cents!
From my personal experience, I can definitely claim that ‘Nice men finish last’ is just another myth. You can very well be nice and yet, develop the firm resolve and mental toughness to succeed in life. Politeness, a smiling face, and good manners often open up unexpected doors and windows of opportunities. Keeping a stiff upper lip and using a foul language doesn’t make you an achiever- it can just make you a loser by losing out on potential friendships and fruitful relationships!

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