Convention

Nov. 28th, 2005 09:38 pm
karen2205: Me with proper sized mug of coffee (Default)
I keep meaning to write this and never seem to find the right opportunity to do so. This is probably somewhat controversial.

As I see it, there are lots of conventions about 'socially acceptable' behaviour, many of which we follow without realising it (ie. not picking one's nose in public or eating non-fast food with cutlery). (Yes, some of these conventions differ from culture to culture ie. there are places where the custom is to eat with one's hands, but that's not important right now).

There are other conventions that we see as outdated and old fashioned eg. the chaperoning of young women. There are others that have been deprecated ie. the one about men not wearing hats in church isn't very relevant when people wear hats so rarely.

Then there are others again that have been deliberately challenged and have mutated into conventions more appropriate for 2005 ie. it's now conventional to hold doors open for the elderly, those with physical disabilities, those with small children, those carrying heavy objects.

And then there are the ones I see people ignoring without any real thought as to why they're doing so. Where I come from it is disrespectful to start tearing into someone's reputation on the day of his/her death and for a couple of months afterwards. I'm willing to have the argument if anyone considers this convention outdated or old fashioned. My point of view is that the convention is intended not to protect the dead from criticism permanently (ie. I'm quite happy to listen to people insulting Hitler and Stalin) but to avoid adding unnecssarily to the grief of the living. Why should the relatives and friends of people who have died have to listen to insults directed at their dead friend/relative when they are in the throes of intense grief? And no, I don't accept 'I'm writing in a newspaper they don't have to read' or 'I'm writing on the internet so they shouldn't go looking for it' as acceptable reasons for insulting someone in the immediate aftermath of their death. As far as I'm concerned there's a time and a place for dissecting someone's life and immediately after his/her death isn't it. Have some respect. The other side to this is 'well, if she'll say that about him today, what on earth would she say about me if I drop dead tomorrow?'.

And I'll give you all fair warning now - if I see anyone dissecting Baroness Thatcher's politics when she dies, I am likely to let rip. I won't say she doesn't have faults - we all have faults, but she *is* someone I admire a lot.

Convention

Nov. 28th, 2005 09:38 pm
karen2205: Me with proper sized mug of coffee (Default)
I keep meaning to write this and never seem to find the right opportunity to do so. This is probably somewhat controversial.

As I see it, there are lots of conventions about 'socially acceptable' behaviour, many of which we follow without realising it (ie. not picking one's nose in public or eating non-fast food with cutlery). (Yes, some of these conventions differ from culture to culture ie. there are places where the custom is to eat with one's hands, but that's not important right now).

There are other conventions that we see as outdated and old fashioned eg. the chaperoning of young women. There are others that have been deprecated ie. the one about men not wearing hats in church isn't very relevant when people wear hats so rarely.

Then there are others again that have been deliberately challenged and have mutated into conventions more appropriate for 2005 ie. it's now conventional to hold doors open for the elderly, those with physical disabilities, those with small children, those carrying heavy objects.

And then there are the ones I see people ignoring without any real thought as to why they're doing so. Where I come from it is disrespectful to start tearing into someone's reputation on the day of his/her death and for a couple of months afterwards. I'm willing to have the argument if anyone considers this convention outdated or old fashioned. My point of view is that the convention is intended not to protect the dead from criticism permanently (ie. I'm quite happy to listen to people insulting Hitler and Stalin) but to avoid adding unnecssarily to the grief of the living. Why should the relatives and friends of people who have died have to listen to insults directed at their dead friend/relative when they are in the throes of intense grief? And no, I don't accept 'I'm writing in a newspaper they don't have to read' or 'I'm writing on the internet so they shouldn't go looking for it' as acceptable reasons for insulting someone in the immediate aftermath of their death. As far as I'm concerned there's a time and a place for dissecting someone's life and immediately after his/her death isn't it. Have some respect. The other side to this is 'well, if she'll say that about him today, what on earth would she say about me if I drop dead tomorrow?'.

And I'll give you all fair warning now - if I see anyone dissecting Baroness Thatcher's politics when she dies, I am likely to let rip. I won't say she doesn't have faults - we all have faults, but she *is* someone I admire a lot.
karen2205: Me with proper sized mug of coffee (Default)
I've had this rant a couple of times now - I may as well have it where you can flame me to your heart's content. Read more... )
karen2205: Me with proper sized mug of coffee (Default)
I've had this rant a couple of times now - I may as well have it where you can flame me to your heart's content. Read more... )

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