You Don’t Need Money to Be Civilized

Today, as I stood behind the elementary school waiting for the Kindergarten teachers to emerge from the back door with our children, I passively listened to a young mother talking on her cell phone. She talked loudly, and with much drama, it was hard not to tune in on her conversation. And then…f-bombs started dropping. I quickly scanned the other parents waiting, but before I could register any disdain on the faces in the crowd, the door opened and the lines of Kindergarteners started filing outside.

I gathered my little one and walked away.

However, hours later, I was still bothered by the young mother and her f-bombs.

Am I a perfect parent? Hell, no! I sneak sweets and hide ice cream treats so I don’t have to share. I yell often. And, I spend too much time on my laptop when I should be making precious memories.

However, when I am in public, whether I am with my children or not, I am respectful, considerate, and mindful of others.

We live in a lower economic section of town. Our elementary is a Title 1 school. The neighborhood, proud and respectable, is poor. But, being poor is not an excuse for acting poorly. The two are not a compulsory cause and effect.

So, why did this woman think it was okay to stand outside an elementary school, in a crowd of parents and grandparents from our community, and obtrusively use inappropriate language?

I don’t know the answer, but I do know it doesn’t cost a thing to be a decent human being.

Originally posted January 2017

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