Is It Okay to Disrespect the Disrespectful?
Today’s post is kinda fun. It is kinda Dr. Seussy—word!–so you may want to read it twice. Or more.I can’t remember what was going on when I wrote this, but someone was probably all over the news complaining that somebody disrespected them. I wish I could remember, but based on the date of this file, I was probably writing it around 5 in the morning. It’s likely that I wasn’t even thinking at all. If I was thinking, I probably wasn’t thinking clearly. So without further ado…
Is Disrespect Even a Verb?
The site dictionary.com has way too many ads. I thought the site freedictionary.com was good, but now Chrome says it “contains harmful programs.” Ads are a little less bad than harmful programs. It did indicate disrespecting is a gerund of disrespect. My copy of Word 2004 doesn’t mind disrespect as a verb.
Okay. That parts out of the way.
Is it okay to disrespect the disrespectful?
I should say up front, that I have no idea. I hope that by writing this and getting my thoughts on the screen, I’ll work it out for you. You can thank me later.
Or even better!
Lots of you flood this page with comments, and we get a great dialog open on respect and disrespect, and we work this out, and our ideas spread–even to Twitter–and we bring peace to the world.
We’ve heard the phrase “to gain respect you must first show respect,” or something like it. We can probably agree that it is difficult to show respect for those who are disrespectful.
To Not Respect
Another question is whether not showing respect for someone is disrespecting someone. I feel that not respecting someone is passive. You don’t deliberately insult or slight the person, you just don’t display the respect they deserve or think they deserve. I think it is okay to not respect the disrespectful.
To disrespect someone, you deliberately insult them or do something else to purposely display your lack of respect for them. This is the issue at hand.
Now that we know exactly what the question is, let’s answer it. Better yet, let me answer it.
A respectable person is a respectful person. (See the rule above.) The reverse is also true. Ergo, a respectable person is not disrespectful. Only those who are not respectable will act disrespectfully.
It looks like my answer is arriving at …
It depends on who you ask, but most people hate an answer that starts with “it depends.”
If you don’t care about being respected, then go ahead and disrespect the disrespectful. They don’t deserve respect anyways. Disrespect away. Just remember, few are likely to respect your disrepectiveness. Word! Thus, it is likely you won’t get the respect you want.
If you are respectful, or want to be respectful, then you won’t even have to think about disrespecting anyone. Wait. Didn’t I just have to think about that? DOH!
You may not respect the disrespectful person, but you also won’t deliberately disrespect that person. You may level with them and frankly suggest to them how they might earn more respect.
They will likely interpret this as disrespect, but that’s just irony.
If you are respectful, you probably won’t be all that concerned with what the disrespectful think of you.
…whether or not it is okay to disrespect the disrespectful depends on whether or not you desire being respected.
Don’t disrespect anyone if you wan to be respected by the respectful and the respected.
So, can anyone explain politicians?
What do you think about this? Did I nail it? I totally did, didn’t I? Or am I way off the mark? Please share your thoughts in the comments.
Now go in peace.