The whole world has been in an uproar lately about the H1N1 virus. It’s a legitimate worry. We need to be aware and prepared and safe.
But there is another virus that has already infected millions of people. And thanks to the wide variety of media available today, when this virus erupts, we can witness it instantaneously.
The dread disease? A horrendous, offensive, egregious lack of manners.
Call me old-fashioned — and I’m not — but lately it seems like people — men and women of all ages — are treating each other like crap…and we get to see it immediately, courtesy of the closest media outlet.
Exhibit A: South Carolina Representative Joe Wilson. His now infamous “You lie!” shoutout during President Barack Obama’s address to a joint session of Congress was an unheard of breach of decorum. He quickly apologized, but his slip became the evening’s news story, not healthcare.
Exhibit B: Serena Williams. She not only verbally abused a teeny-tiny lines woman at the US Open, she also repeatedly shoved her tennis racket in the official’s face and threw the F-bomb around 5+ times in front of an international audience. She managed to be threatening, tasteless and classless — all at the same time — and only issued an apology after her publicist reminded her that her book was ” in stores now.”
Exhibit C: Kayne West. Less than 24 hours after Serena’s meltdown, West walked on the VMA Awards Show stage and took the microphone away from Taylor Swift — who was accepting an award for her music video — to tell her that Beyonce’s video was “better.” To the audience’s credit, he got boo’ed…big time. And Beyonce — ever classy — brought Swift back up on stage later in the evening for a second chance to speak.
What up, world? Have we all forgotten the basic rules of civility? I hate to be old school here — ’cause I’m not — but treating people with common courtesy and respect is still expected, even in a world where we interact with each other more and more via email, instant messenger, facebook, tweets, and pings.
Thank you for reading. Have a great day.
(See? That wasn’t so hard.)