The News is Filled with Stories of Incivility, and Worse – A Sad Reminder from M. Scott Peck

A-World-waitingI wish to resurrect and redefine the meaning of civility. This is necessary for the healing of our society. What is civility? Politeness and good manners are designed to avoid hurting people’s feelings. But I began to arrive at a better definition of civility…
Genuine civility is in part consciously motivated organizational behavior…
It seems we may live in a society that has almost forgotten the glory of what it means to be human.
We are in need of healing.
Scott Peck, A World Waiting to be Born: Civility Rediscovered


This is something of a sad rant…

I’m having trouble thinking about all this…

Do you ever feel like the world is filled with jerks? By people who missed their “be polite” training lessons? People whose mothers would be ashamed of them?

I’m not talking about people who “fail,” who give in to weaknesses, but are ashamed of themselves when they do.

I’m talking about people who seem to have lost all sense of restraint, and who really seem to think that they can treat other people like…   well, like they’re not actually human beings worthy of respect and kindness.

What’s wrong with these people?

At the moment, I’m reflecting not just on the genuinely, truly evil, who literally cut people’s heads off. That’s another whole difficult issue.

But, today, I’m thinking about stories like the one about the executive from Uber who really should be fired and go back to a multi-year “be civil” training program; and the growing mountain of allegations against Bill Cosby. Heartbreaking!

{Here’s just a little slice of the current Uber problem, from this NY Times article:
Uber’s latest scandal is a doozy: A top executive of the ride service reportedly described a Nixonian plan to dig up dirt on journalists who criticize it and sully their reputations.
But there is a bigger story here that goes far beyond Uber: With the power that comes from being a big, important company comes great responsibility. And the culture of technology start-ups sometimes has trouble recognizing that.}

And I get sick at my stomach at the tone and vocabulary of many who tweet and leave comments all over the web in words that would embarrass any mother around.

What’s wrong with these people?

As M. Scott Peck put it, we are in need of healing…


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