“The Life of the Nation is Secure Only While the Nation is Honest, Truthful and Virtuous”
~ Frederick Douglass
Most parents and teachers realize that values and perspectives must be planted by personal examples. However, in practice we sometimes try to build our children and students behavioral routines that we personally have not yet mastered. We insist that our children get proper sleep, even though we scrape by on far less than we need. We insist that they eat properly, even though we survive on coffee and donuts. We insist that they control their anger, even though we sometimes show rage. In short, we find it easier to work on our children than ourselves. The hypocrisy has disastrous results. Too many children legitimately view their parents/teachers as insincere because they witness them saying one thing and then doing another. Disrespect burgeons slowly, and often around the ages of twelve and fifteen, it strips the parent-child or teacher-student relationship. Children then reject the moral authority of the adults in their lives. They isolate themselves emotionally from parents and teachers, and begin making their own (self destructive) decisions. We have got to take a look at ourselves and see how our actions have a major impact on the lives of our children.
In the last decade we have experienced a suffering economy, political unrest, job loss and unemployment benefits being over utilized. We currently live in a society of liars, cheaters and manipulators who lack integrity and honesty. It has become the “norm” to have multiple sex partners. Honesty, morality and virtues have become a thing of the past. To encounter such individuals with these qualities is very rare. This current generation has conformed to the example we have set for them. They are only reproducing what has been modeled before them. Often with comments such as: “Well my mom was on welfare and she got a check, why can’t I? What’s wrong with that?” So many young people feel that if it worked for mama, then it will work for them.
They continue to follow a vicious cycle that will perpetuate through generations unless an intentional action is taken and this habitual cycle is broken.