A Plea for Politeness

A Plea for Politeness

Being polite seems to be going out of style, when it's something to be practiced everyday.

Maybe it’s the Midwesterner in me, or maybe I’m just crazy, but I firmly believe politeness has gone out of style in our generation. I hate when people rag on a generation for no reason, but this time it is crucial--I feel as if being polite is genuinely slipping through the millennial cracks and becoming a thing of the past.

It could just be the fact that it’s New York, or this school could be the exception to the rule, but I have had the door slammed on my face because someone couldn’t be bothered to look back and hold it, and it's happened too many times for it to be just one person.

No, I’m not saying we should bring back the 1950s or that guys should be holding the doors for every female they see, but what I am saying is that we should have enough respect for each other to be polite. Yes, we can take the second derivative of an equation, or interpret a Shakespeare play, or memorize the periodic table, yet we fail to do something as simple as hold a door.

I get that we are all fast-paced--we have maybe 15 minutes to get across campus for classes and we all want to be first in the salad line at Trillium. But, politeness doesn’t have to be a grand gesture coupled with a top hat and a pea coat. It can be a small action that doesn’t take any extra time out of your day.

Simply smiling, holding the door so someone who is right behind you doesn’t get smacked in the face, taking your headphones out while talking to someone—all simple gestures that take no additional time. And when someone smiles back at you, or someone else holds the door for you, or when someone wishes you a good day because you engaged in an actual conversation, you will feel better too.

Being polite is a matter of respect. Everybody forgets to hold the door every once in awhile, but making a habit of showing those around you respect through basic acts of politeness should be a priority. We should all try and be conscious of how our actions could potentially affect others.

Trying to shove onto the bus before people get off isn’t helping anyone, not even you. Watching Tasty videos when you’re in the first row of the lecture hall is not only a direct slap in the face to your professor but is also distracting to all the people behind you. Subtweeting or posting about people on social media instead of directly talking to them is specifically meant to be hurtful and usually achieves the result. Doing these things actually muddies our life. Then we’re left with incomplete lecture notes, burned bridges, and an embarrassing memory of being told to wait your turn by the bus driver.

Us being polite makes our live easier. It also sets a positive trend in our environments and makes the days less difficult to get through. Being polite to someone encourages them to do the same. It doesn’t hurt to be kind to someone who isn’t your interviewer or professor or superior, and show them a little respect. You’ll appreciate it the next time you walk to class in the rain, and someone makes the effort to hold the door open so you don’t spend any unnecessary time getting soaked.
Cover Image Credit: Universities Abroad

Popular Right Now

When You Make A Girl An Aunt, You Change Her World In All The Best Ways

When you make a girl an aunt, you make her the happiest girl in the world.


My brother and his wife recently blessed our family with the sweetest bundle of joy on planet earth. OK, I may be a little bias but I believe it to be completely true. I have never been baby crazy, but this sweet-cheeked angel is the only exception. I am at an age where I do not want children yet, but being able to love on my nephew like he is my own is so satisfying.

When you make a girl an aunt, you make her a very protective person.

From making sure the car seat is strapped in properly before every trip, to watching baby boy breathe while he sleeps, you'll never meet someone, besides mommy and daddy of course, who is more concerned with the safety of that little person than me.

When you make a girl an aunt, you give her a miniature best friend.

There is something about an aunt that is so fun. An aunt is a person you go to when you think you're in trouble or when you want something mom and dad said you couldn't have. An aunt is someone who takes you to get ice cream and play in the park to cool down after having a temper tantrum. I can't wait to be the one he runs to.

When you make a girl an aunt, she gets to skip on the difficulty of disciplining.

Being an aunt means you get to be fun. Not to say I wouldn't correct my nephew if he were behaving poorly, but for the most part, I get to giggle and play and leave the hard stuff for my brother.

When you make a girl an aunt, you give her the best listening ears.

As of right now I only listen to the sweet coos and hungry cries but I am fully prepared to listen to all the problems in his life in the future.

When you make a girl an aunt, you make her the best advice giver.

By the time my nephew needs advice, hopefully, I will have all of my life lessons perfected into relatable stories.

When you make a girl an aunt, you make her a number-one fan

Anything you do in life sweet boy, I will be cheering you on. I already know you are going to do great things.

When you make a girl an aunt, she learns what true love is.

The love I have for my nephew is so pure. Its the love that is just there. I don't have to choose to show love every day, I don't have to forgive, I don't have to worry if it is reciprocated, it is just there.

When you make a girl an aunt, you make her the happiest person in the world.

I cannot wait to watch my precious nephew grow into the amazing person that I know he is going to be.

Related Content

Connect with a generation
of new voices.

We are students, thinkers, influencers, and communities sharing our ideas with the world. Join our platform to create and discover content that actually matters to you.

Learn more Start Creating

A Poem: My Mother

In honor of Mother's Day, that was on the 12th, here is a poem dedicated to my mother.


To the only person who can be my mentor, friend, and leader at the same time

To someone who would make me read my own books before bedtime

And puts everything down to make sure there is a smile on my face

To the person that I find impossible to ever replace.

Somehow you are always right even when it seems wrong

And when the worst does happen, how do you still manage to stay so strong?

I'm not only impressed but inspired by you

Knowing that somehow you'll always know me better than I do.

When I'm frustrated and annoy you, you simply try to understand me

Because you have always told me that even when you can't understand, plain acceptance is the key

You have listened to all my laughs, heard me cry, and felt my emotions like they were your own

You are the only reason I am joyous and the security I need to know that I am never alone.

To the only person who has truly taught me how to live

And watched me grow and make mistakes yet still knows how to forgive

Because that's who she is, certainly not like any other

There are many women but none like my own mother.

Happy Mother's Day!

Related Content

Facebook Comments