Back in ancient Rome, spectators went to see gladiators fight to the death for the sake of entertainment. We may cringe at the cruelty of this, but are we really that different today? We may not be publicly murdering people, but we are practicing rude behavior to shame folks in front of the television audience.
Once again, I see an article about Simon Cowell harassing some kid on American Idol for the sake of entertainment. If it's not Simon, it's a reality TV show kicking a person off the island or publicly stating how much one dislikes another, but why?
These shows, for the sake of entertainment, are sending a scary and real message to our youngsters: it's okay to be rude to one another. As someone who works with children, I see that they are getting this message loud and clear.
But, it's not just our children. Society in general has become overly rude. Just the other day, I stepped into my vet's office to fill a prescription for my dog. The woman quickly took my order and handed me the pills. All she had to do was get me to sign the receipt, and I'd be on my way. Instead, she stopped to talk to the vet and help a young co-worker who didn't understand how to perform a function on a computer. After I stood in wait for several minutes, she handed me my receipt without so much as an apology for wasting my time. As so many other times, it became obvious that I--the customer--am not the most important person.
We may not be killing each other with swords, but there are other ways to bring harm.