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Are Today's Youth more Disrespectful?

Are Today's Youth more Disrespectful?

While it is more likely that children of Diasporan parents will be raised in the Diaspora, some parents also entrust their children to be raised by appointed Guardians who may be family members, friends, or some recommended adults; while some parents simply entrust their children to boarding schools trustees.

As a result of the variety of ways in children are raised, they obviously would turn out differently, but one thing they all have in common is environmental influences, above and beyond how they've been raised. Compared to Youth or the past it seems more apparent that some significant changes that have occured are not only becoming very obvious but also have major impacts not only on how these Youth turn out in their adult lives, but also on how they are influencing society at large.

Societal influences affect children regardless of their race or nationality, and as prominent as it is in the U.S., considering the effect of U.S. mainstream attitudes and media on the world at large, this may evidently be becoming a worldwide concern.

A significant number of children today have been raised to speak their mind regardless of the consequences, and obviously do not hesitate to ask questions (sometimes without tact), while very much doing as much as they please, because they feel empowered by the rights given them to call the police or other establishments at whim.

A growing majority now talk back to adults, whether it be their parents, guardians or teachers. Some have ATTITUDE problems and the adults in their lives sometimes feel powerless to correct or chastise them for fear of being prosecuted, locked up or plain simply shot.

What do we make of this? Have the children been raised to be disrespectful or is it simply a TRUMP card that the authorities have given them that is leading to their attitude problems?

Yes, laws are put in place to protect children's rights, but have adults literarily given up their powers as adults to the Youth of today? It used to take a village to raise a child, now you may get reported to Social services or the police for trying to discipline your own child, let alone someone else's child.

For example, children are encouraged to report any inappropriate touching by adults, but sometimes the lines are not clear between what is considered affection and what is child molestation when such incidences are reported by children, especially in cases where the children are being led to or coached, rather than simply being permitted to report the incidences as they indeed occurred. Is there any wonder that DNA reports in the U.S. show that a significant percentage of men accused of rape did not infact rape the women?
Are these some of the behaviours learnt as children that have been carried into adulthood?

Lying, manipulation, laying blame after all are not behaviours any of us were born with, these obviously being learned behaviours can only propel a child into adopting worse behaviours.

Children left UNdisciplined due to fear of repercussions by their parents usually end up in trouble at various stages of their lives, while some end up ad juvenile prison statistics or simply DEAD.

There is nothing wrong in encouraging a child to be assertive and confident in speaking their mind, but is it everything in their minds that adults need to hear, including the rudeness and disrespect which some of today's children express and exhibit in their speech and body language, and sometimes generally bad attitude?

We watch TV advertisements wherein children talk back to their parents or other adults and some think they're simply funny, but what are the repercussions of such portrayals? An example is one AD that the child responded to his Dad saying his armpit stinks.
Adults can discern, but how many children as wise enough to realize that such attitudes are improper considering that is what they are constantly exposed to TV.
Beavies and Butthead kind of shows are some of the shows and movies that adults may see as sick minded, and would never take seriously, but how many children experiment with the acts performed in such shows when they gather with their peers in school or in their neighbourhoods?

Some Diasporan parents have opted to send their children home to learn better etiquette in their home countries where prevailing negative influences are less mainstream, and for even the children who were developing attitudes prior to being sent to their home countries, significant changes in their etiquette, morality, general attitudes, respect and behaviour are often quite apparent and very well noted.
This though is not a viable option for all Diasporan parents, neither is it always feasible for parents who are citizens of the Diasporan or host countries, as they don't have the inbuilt option of sending their children abroad or away from their own home base.

So the question remains "Are Today's Youth (regardless of their nationality or race) more Disrespectful?" and if that is the case, "What can we as adults do, to reduce the growing trend?"

After all they will be tomorrow's leaders

Cxsm
10th April '04

Cxsm 2004   All Rights Reserved
admin

Interesting discussion. Yes, kids today are more assertive, speak their minds, regardless of the repercussions, do not hesitate to ask questions. I think these are good qualities that help them excel, encourage perseverance and keep them from following the crowd blindly. That is the good side, without balance then, there are the attitudes, anti-social behaviors, defiance (adults and getting into trouble with the law).

In general, looking at most kids that I see today and work with, I don't think today's youth are more disrespectful than our parents thought we were disrespectful back when we were growing up. There are lots of exception to this rule (today's kids not quite more disrespectful) and you stated those in your email. For example, parents are not spending the needed time (not quality, quantity, there is no such thing as quality without quantity) to teach and train up their children and dealing with issues such as respect.

I believe, we can have open communication with respect. Children can be taught to discern when to open their mouths and when to keep it closed, even today with all the freedom, assertion and tolerance given to our kids today.

If you think about when we were growing up, our parents also complained that we were not as respectful as they were and that we, so I think as long as there is a generational gap, the older generation will always thing the next generation has so much more to learn, I think this is natural. This ought to spur us to wake up and do all we can to educate not just our kids but others. And, it is more challenging to correct other kids because of some of the negative things people have done in the past.

Maybe I live in a different world but I will correct my children and their friends and the kids in the neighborhood and the kids at church. Most parents are okay with this. There are few parents who will complain and so I just leave those kids alone. Most of the parents that I know and respect their parenting styles (I "know" not casual acquaintance, is the important phrase), are allowed to correct my children but kids are smarter than we give them credit and they will see inconsistency in adults and as a result will not listen to those adults who are not consistent in their talk and walk. But they should be taught to not do this respectfully.

All, in all, our kids are like we are to our heavenly father. With God, even though He has given us all the instructions we need to lead an abundant, healthy, respectful, loving and wonderful live, we seldom follow His instructions and as such we make mistakes or even act in rebellion and that is when He gently disciplines us but He is always so merciful and graceful and loving in His discipline, so we as parents and aunts and uncles will see our kids not do what they are taught, so we will remember to be patient and graceful and merciful to correct and discipline. A lot of parents today do not understand the gentle balance of love & discipline, it is challenging and with all the other pressures of the world today, we are tempted to ignore one or the other (love or discipline) to the detriment of the next generation as you said.

One last thing, Abuse is real and there are whole lot more unreported than there are lies and though I allow some people to discipline my kids, they are taught to beware and get away from any adult who tries to manipulate (molest, abuse, whatever) them and if they have to be rude or aggressive to stop the person, they are given the permission in this instance. I see too many adults in counseling who were molested, raped, abused as a young person and they were too afraid, intimidated, respectful to an adult who did not deserve an ounce of respect for what they did to the undeserving young person. So, this is something we have to be very careful about because it just seems that the pressures of life and relationships keeps multiplying the desire for people to take advantage of younger and younger people, believe it or not the youngest age that has been molested/abuse (sexually) is months and oldest in their eighties. What could a baby or defenseless old person do to protect themselves from predators?

So, to me, it is not quite as simple, to say this generation is more disrespectful considering what they have to deal with that we did not really have to deal with or not to the extent that they are dealing with things (mass media, drugs, over-sensual society, over-materialistic society, etc),... So, I just wanted to point out some of the positives of asserssion, open communication, etc that is balanced with respect, love and obedience. My 2 cents...

It is always great to read your emails...

love,
Buki
12/1/04
admin

Quote:
Dear Cxsm,

You are a gifted writer. I enjoy reading your thought provoking articles. I hope you are keeping all these, I see a book deal in the immediate future.
P.S. do need a Manager? I work resonably cheap.
Happy Holidays and God Bless.
Sam K. A 12/4/04
admin

Re: are Today's Children More Disrespectful?

Again CXSM, interesting thread. I think (sometimes ha ha) that kids are a direct reflection of their parents but this is not always the case. Take me in point, when I was younger, I was a wild child and did whatever I wanted to do. My parents raised me well but I decided to be a fool which wasn't their fault. Anyway, I have since learned from that!

I do see a lot of disrespectful kids but more so on the Caucasian side. Most black folks I know would never let their kids be disrespectful to them or to anyone else for that matter. The folks I do know don't believe in "timeouts"; they believe in the real smackdowns if you know what I mean! I see many kids that curse their parents, use profanity and their parents say nothing. Look at Ozzy Osbourne's family. All of them are jacked up except for the oldest daughter. Note she is not on the reality show with them (smart girl).

Even at my age, I don't even want to let my mother know that I even know profanity and that I sip the bubbly from time to time:

That is out of respect for my mother. When I go to visit my parents, I do not stay up late in the streets nor do I play "worldly" music since they don't like that. However, what I do in my house is different but I do have a level of respect for my people.

As far as that molestation issue goes, we were raised to know the difference and to speak up if something like that would ever happen to us. Children left undisciplined seem to believe that the world owes them something which we all know is not the case. My father once threatened to give me a "whupping" and I told him that I would call the police. Do you know that my dad handed me the phone and told me that I should call and that he was ready to go to jail for my behind!!! Ha ha. Some kids I would like to whup cause I feel they need it. I don't mean whupping kids like in the Antwoine Fisher movie. That was severe abuse.

You mentioned that sending the kids to Africa is what some people are doing. Personally, I don't see the point in doing that. My husband feels that by going to Nigeria the kids will know how to act..umm, a kid is a kid is a kid no matter where the child is. Had he said he wanted the kids to go to Nigeria to learn Nigerian culture for the summer would be ok. I am curious to know how it feels to send your baby overseas...Maybe I should post that in the other thread you started CXSM???

LadyK
4/11/04
admin

Whup their ass! Whup their ass!! Whup their ass!!!

Spare the rod and spoil the child is the golden rule. Yes I have seen bad ass kids on both sides of the color divide. It is pathetic that people would let their kids usurp their authority as elders/parents. My rule is to whip as needed. If I have to go to jail for disciplining my child, so be it. I'd rather go to jail for that than have the government and its agents help me discipline the child with handcuffs et al.

Maverixz
4/13/04
admin

Maverixz wrote:
Whup their ass! Whup their ass!! Whup their ass!!!

Spare the rod and spoil the child is the golden rule. Yes I have seen bad ass kids on both sides of the color divide. It is pathetic that people would let their kids usurp their authority as elders/parents. My rule is to whip as needed. If I have to go to jail for disciplining my child, so be it. I'd rather go to jail for that than have the government and its agents help me discipline the child with handcuffs et al.

Maverixz
4/13/04


Whew Maverixz, I almost fell off my chair when I read "whup that ass"!!! Ha ha, in my house, you had to pick your own switch and don't let it be too small cause you would doubly get what was coming to ya!!!

In the great words of Maverixz....whup that ass  

LadyK
4/13/04
admin

LadyK wrote:
Whew Maverixz, I almost fell off my chair when I read "whup that ass"!!! Ha ha, in my house, you had to pick your own switch and don't let it be too small cause you would doubly get what was coming to ya!!!

In the great words of Maverixz....whup that ass

LadyK
4/13/04


MrsK, what can a broda do but to put the whupping on them bad kids' asses?

Maverixz
admin

That's all you can do my brotha!

LadyK
4/13/04
admin

Ladyk! maverixz! Pls Sir and Madam watch your language!
I'm sure "bad ass" and "whup that ass" are part of the language we wouldn't want those kids to be repeating. The keyword is DISCIPLINE DISCIPLINE DISCIPLINE!!!. Parents self discipline, then discipline the kids.

(By the way, I know cxsm, maverixz, Sola and LadyLK are all no nonsense disciplinarian parents  )
Failing that, boot camp always works wonders on kids ( a group of British teenage tear-aways were sent to an American boot camp recently  ).

ciao
The Dreamer
4/13/04
admin

Speaking of "whup that ass" I am reminded of a true story: during the Brixton riots in London in the 80s, two teenage boys decided to go out and see what was happening and do their share of rock-throwing and looting. Lo and behold who should turn up but their mother - and she beat those boys all the way home, in front of their peers! I'll bet it made them think twice about getting into trouble again.

What I have never understood is the attitude "send them home and they will learn their culture". Why? Why is it that children from the Asian continent don't have to be sent home to learn their culture and language, but it is considered the "only way" for African children to learn theirs?

I'm inclined to think that parents who fall into this category tend to be too accommodating (i.e. throw out the more important aspects of their own values once they leave home), teach their children very little of their own culture, language and values, and expect society to be responsible for raising their children. Are we surprised at the way the children turn out?

Nozza
4/13/04
admin

Actually Nozza,
There are a lot of Asians I know of who spent part of their secondary School years in their home country. These are British born and bred Asians, who spent the first 2 years of secondary school back in Pakistan or Bangladesh. Also, British born and bred Hong Kong Chinese kids being sent to Hong Kong for a year or 2. All this just for the kids to imbibe the culture properly. I have come across several such people. Being raised in their homelands, I think we understand each other's backgrounds better than our purely British raised counterparts. It's not easy to put it in words; this intagible quality, but believe Nozza, there's merit in being raised back home !!!

ciao
The Dreamer
4/13/04
admin

Well spoken!

Sola
4/13/04
admin

Umm, that's what I don't understand about sending the kids home. Is that a sign you are incapable as a parent to know your own culture? Umm, inquiring minds want to know!

Ha ha, as far as the "whup da azz" mentality, my father used to tell us that he would talk to us in a manner he knew we understood....if you know what I mean.

A lot of folks I know were beaten in front of their other classmates. I will never forget this guy in my kindergarten class. His mother actually came to the school and whupped him right in front of the other kids. Our teacher stated that if we laughed, we'd be next in line!!

LadyK
4/13/04
admin

LadyK wrote:
Umm, that's what I don't understand about sending the kids home. Is that a sign you are incapable as a parent to know your own culture? Umm, inquiring minds want to know!

Knowing is one thing. SEEING is another. The American system counters everything you try to pass on to them with something totally different. Some of those things make children feel life is all candy. Well, it can be bitter too. Showing him the other side gives him a chance to become broad-minded. My white direct report, a director, takes her kids to orphanages to help just to remind them they should appreciate whatever they have, no matter how little.

You're not saying they should not imbibe American ways...You're just saying know where you're from so that you can remain rooted. Conspicuous consumption is all over the place...Give them a chance to see people who are hungry and living happily, who don't have, yet are contented. You want them to know not all roads are paved, all fingers are not equal. You want them to SEE the daily struggle some have to go through to keep food on the table, see the madness that is the politicians in power, see the smile on the face of the grandmother in the village when you pay the occasional visit.

You want them to know there are places where people like him are the majority. You want him to know all the wars and hunger and AIDS reported in the western media is not all Nigeria and Africa are about. There is no way to explain that... You have to show him. He has to see it to believe it. You want him to know being poor should be a motivator, not an excuse to roam the night robbing and stealing and maiming. You want him to know anger should be turned into hunger...

Give him information and then let him decide how to live his life.

Sola
4/13/04
admin

Sola, we have the struggles here in America but they are a bit different. Aids is here, gang violence, homelessness, poverty, uneducated people and all of that. I have no problem with the child staying in Nigeria for a few months but to be gone for a period of years disturbs me.

LadyK
4/13/04
admin

The Dreamer, I don't disagree with you about the merits of being sent back home.

I know many people of Chinese, Pakistani and Indian descent whose only trips home were during the summer holidays. They've never lived there, but they are fluent in the language. One thing many have said about going home, is that it puts things (values and worldview) into perspective, and it gives them a greater sense of "belonging" and knowing where they come from. In addition, it gave them a greater appreciation of what they grew up with (and perhaps made them think twice about whingeing!). Many of those I've met who fall into this category tend to choose to live there for a time when they're older, usually as a GAP year or after university.

But I have only met one person of Nigerian parentage who fluently speaks Yoruba and, as far as I'm aware, has never lived in Nigeria. The only other person I know is of Nigerian/Caribbean parentage and went to live there briefly. It was interesting, people would talk about them and their mother and didn't know that the children understood everything they were saying! I'm sure there are other people, but I haven't met any them. Most of the people I know were born here, went home when they were young and basically grew up there or are recent migrants.

So I don't have any argument with wanting children to understand the culture and traditions of their parents, I don't even have any argument with sending them to live there for a period. I just do not agree that shipping them off home it is the ONLY way. That has a lot to do with the parents themselves, and the foundations need to be laid HERE and NOW rather than throwing them in at the deep end for an indefinite period.

Nozza
4/13/04
admin

LadyK wrote:
Sola, we have the struggles here in America but they are a bit different. Aids is here, gang violence, homelessness, poverty, uneducated people and all of that. I have no problem with the child staying in Nigeria for a few months but to be gone for a period of years disturbs me.

Well, it may not be a period of years. Each family will decide how they want to approach it. You see, by virtue of the fact that they kid lives here, he will know about this place. And he will know very little about elsewhere. We don't have enough cultural products to keep his imagination fed like America. We don't have all the hip fashion designs, music, books, video games, etc, and even our movies are just developing. That child will be in a cultural limbo merely going from our otherworldly indoors into a totally absorbing American outdoors.

What some parents do is have the kid go to high school in Nigeria. Its like going to boarding school. It expands their horizon. There is the extended family system - sisters, brothers, parents, etc, to keep an eye on them. Hopefully, it will teach them independence and discipline. Of course it can go horribly wrong. Extended family members have been known to be terrible in some cases. But a child can go horribly wrong living right in your room, so? You just hope you have taught them enough to know right from wrong.

Now that is not to say they will be more respectful, going back to the topic. Respect for others starts from childhood and it starts with you teaching your children to respect themselves first. It starts with you treating them with respect, while being firm. Treating others with respect in their presence... It really boils down to what they see you doing. Respect has nothing to do with where they grow up. It has more to do with WHO brought them up and WHAT they were brought up doing and seeing.

Sola
4/13/04
admin

Sholly boy, ...well said !

Folks, pls read what I wrote on the mothertongue thread, this partly explains the attitudes of some Nigerian parents. My views at the end give a partial explanation of what is going on:
The Dreamer wrote:
Here in London, you'll find that several Naija organisations run language schools for their kids. Although there are a large number of parents who DON'T want their wrds to know the mother tongue, not all parents suffer from this colonial-mentality. I expect that back in Naija, it is largely the Lagosians (mostly of Southern Nigerian ethnic extraction ie Yoruba, Igbo, Urhobo etc) that neglect their mothertongues.

Most of the rest of the country still utilise their mother tongues. Our northern Nigerian brethren always promote the Hausa language wherever they go !!! They don't seem to have an inferiority complex towards the Western world, unlike the Southerners. Although you can argue that they fel inferior towards the Arabs, nevertheless, they have not abandoned their mother tongues in favour of Arabic, unlike the Southerners.  :?


@Nozza, I have met a few British raised Nigerians who have never visited Nigeria, but can speak Yoruba fairly fluently. But the majority cannot, which reflects the parents' attitudes. The new generation of Nigerian settlers have a very different mentality, from those who arrived here in the 1950s - 1980s era. There are a new generation of Nigerian children in the UK, London especially, who are growing up with full knowledge of their mothertongues. Most of this generation are not yet teenagers, but the foundations have been layed !

Previous generations tried to fit in with their Carribean peers (who mocked them as African Boubous ). They tended to distance themselves from everything Africa. Their names, language, culture, clothes etc. They were also among the first to mock Africans who came to the UK in the 1990s. However, now that the home raised Nigerians have proved themselves, this group of people now want to identify with the home raised. But since the language(s), culture(s) and social mores are strange to them, how can they fit in ?

ciao
The Dreamer
4/13/04
admin

The Dreamer, I don't disagree with you (my, aren't I doing well today?) Most of the more recent generations are very different to the previous emigres of the 50s and 60s.

I think the African and Caribbean thing back then was a bit more complex than you explained (there was lots of mudslinging and name calling from both sides!), there were a whole bunch of other factors in play than simply trying to "fit in".

Having said that, I also agree with what Sola has said regarding disciplining children. It is the foundation laid that is the important launchpad for everything else.

Are today's children more disrespectful? In many cases this is true. What is the solution? Well, a good dose of sending them back home seems to have worked for a number of them! I think we should band together and start our own "shipping children home" company....

Nozza
4/13/04
admin

Well Nozza girl,

I wasn't living in the UK during the era of African/Carribean mudslinging. However I must have caught the tail end of it ! You see, when I arrived here, there were still some foolish folks who made snide comments about Afrian languages, names, accents etc. I didn't have time for such idiocy, but when I felt like it, I gave back as good as I got!

I feel sorry for the generations that grew up here from the 1950s to the early 1990s. The only thing Nigerian about them are their names or surnames. A friend of mine calls them our lost brothers!

I think there are already a number of companies/initiatives that help place Naija kids from here into schools back home.
Sorry Nozza, we won't be making a killing as you thought  

ciao
The Dreamer
4/13/04
admin

The Dreamer wrote:
I think there are already a number of companies/initiatives that help place Naija kids from here into schools back home.

Sorry Nozza, we won't be making a killing as you thought  
ciao
 

Awww Maaaaan.....  :cry:

Nozza
4/14/04

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