What Ever Happened to Class? Why Good Manners Matter.

DSC_9410 (800x536)Recent news has been full of coverage of persistent uncivil behavior by a person who aspires to become a powerful leader of an important human organization.  Sadly, it seems that some humans believe that fame and wealth entitle them to behave in whatever manner they desire and say whatever they wish, regardless of the consequences and without any consideration for their fellow human beings.  Some seek to justify this ruffian behavior by claiming they are just “telling it like it is” but to be blunt, this is cow manure.[1] Genuine candor does not warrant abusive conduct.  Sometimes I wonder if the wrong species is running this planet!

I am reminded of lyrics from the movie musical “Chicago”, sung by the beautiful Catherine Zeta-Bones:

What ever happened to fair dealing

And pure ethics,

And nice manners?

Why is it everyone now is a pain in the [tail][2]

What ever happened to class?

Ironically, humans train us dogs to control our impulses. We are rewarded for demonstrating self-discipline and a stable temperament.[3]  A big dog does not have to be a brute to be taken seriously.  Who would challenge the power and determination of a well-behaved and focused police or military dog?  Perhaps some humans should attend obedience school.

Why does polite behavior matter?  In the workplace, it shows that you respect your colleagues and raises morale.  It demonstrates that you have the emotional maturity to think before your speak.  It enhances your ability to work productively with others. If you are the big dog in the office, you are setting the tone for everyone else.  In contrast, if you are a distempered bully, people will not want to work with you.  They will avoid telling you anything that will trigger an attack even if it something you need to know.  Your performance and results will be adversely affected in the long run.

I want to add some personal reflections on the use of profanity in the workplace.  It seems to be very fashionable these days to use strong language under the mistaken belief that it shows you are tough and not afraid to candidly speak your mind.  My advice about such a habit, to borrow an obedience school command:  DROP IT!  It is not a sign of strength; it is a sign of a weak vocabulary and limited communication skills.  It is unprofessional.  Some believe profanity is an indicant of low intelligence.  By the way, persistent use of such language may create a hostile work environment.  You could get sued or fired.

Here is my challenge to you readers.   Whatever your past deportment has been, raise the bar! Bring a new set of “over-the-top “manners to the workplace.  For some, the change may be continuous improvement of previous good conduct.  Others may induce shock and awe among co-workers.  In either case, have fun observing the reaction and don’t back off!  Your class act will become contagious.  Please let me know how it turns.  I want to hear from you!

Your best friend,


[1] I prefer to use this agrarian term rather than profane language for the reason explained more fully below.

[2] Expletive replaced.

[3] In contrast, humans who behave badly are often rewarded with a great amount of free publicity.

2 thoughts on “What Ever Happened to Class? Why Good Manners Matter.

  1. Valerie Binder

    We (the cats and I) heartily agree with you, Harley. Of course by nature we felines are a refined breed. Dogs as well have much better manners than a lot of humans. You need to send your message to Washington, Harley. They may not listen, thinking they are superior because they’re human, but we know better, don’t we?

    Keep sending your wisdom, Gentleman Dog.

  2. Pingback: What Has Happened to Basic Human Civility? | Harley's Boxer Briefings

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