The letter "Respect is earned", from Paul Evans-McLeod and published on June 20, is a gross overstatement and possibly based on isolation from reality and reading too much press stuff.
Discipline with cane and verbal violence created intellectual cripples, with many perpetuating the same in their families by the bashing, etc, like that which created them.
Those adults I most respected and loved were able to correct and direct me with very little or no violence, physical or verbal! Well-chosen words did the trick.
The youth of today are for the most part respectful, dignified, capable, responsible and caring people who do not need harsh direction. My life has been centred on young people and I am proud to say that most of our emerging generation are way above what we were at that age. The very small percentage of problem-causing folk are magnified in our minds by media. And the international failure to provide meaningful employment has still not destroyed the enthusiasm and basic goodness of most young folk.
Most youth respond in the same vein as they are spoken to and treated and we often need to step back and examine our behaviours towards youth.
- Waikato Times