It’s a shame that shame is no longer a valid motivator for appropriate behavior in our society.
When I was a child if someone tossed trash on the sidewalk one of our neighbors would stick her head out the window and yell, “Shame on you. Pick that up.” As a child and teen, I avoided certain behaviors because other than it being against the rules/the law, to be caught would be shameful.
Shame is now an antiquated concept in our culture.
While picking up the mail my husband came across a group of young (perhaps 10-12 –year-old) boys ganging up on one unfortunate young fellow. The bullies claimed it was a “fun fight,” but the guy on the ground screamed, “No, it’s not.” When my husband told them to knock it off the chief bully responded with, “Who are you, my Dad?” Oh, shame on him. Who did he think he was that he was entitled to beat up on someone else and then mouth off to an adult?
Current entertainment news reported that both Tiger Woods and Jesse James, upon being caught cheating on their wives, immediately checked into a rehab clinic. They avoided the stigma of shame by covering their misdeed with a clinical term. Perhaps they do have clinical problems, but come on, they should be ashamed of their behavior. Anyone who breaks trust/a vow/laws/rules of etiquette even, should be ashamed of themselves.
Please don’t assume I’m not a compassionate person because I advocate a return to shame, but honestly, don’t you think some of the selfish and self-centered behaviors in our culture need to be curbed?