Respect is More Than a Hit Song in the 1960s

Shaquille - Lorain, Ohio
Entered on November 12, 2008
Age Group: Under 18
Themes: respect

My parents taught me a lot of things growing up that I’ve forgotten but, I’ve never forgotten how they taught me respect. The definition of respect is to feel or show honor or esteem for someone or something. The dictionary can tell you what respect is, but it can’t show you what respect is.

I was raised by both my mother and father in Lorain, Ohio with my older brother. My parents were reputable to other people, which earned them valuable things (money, jewelry, price deduction off of items, etc.). During my years as a toddler, I saw that being upright can earn you rewards or gifts. While growing up, I was the most sociable and welcoming person you could ever meet but my friends had nasty mouths and attitudes. They were discourteous to their teachers and other people which rubbed off on me because I was hanging around them too much. I thought that being bad-mannered was cool because I was being a follower and I would have done anything to make some friends.

I’ve always tried to make friends but I’ve ended up making the erroneous type of friends. They’ve gotten me into trouble and tricked me into showing me that being disrespectful is cool. My parents saw how my attitude changed and they told me how respect is one of the number one priorities in life and how far you can get with it. My dad also taught me to never be a follower but a leader. So eventually, I’ve stopped hanging with them and I was back to my old self. As for my so-called “friends,” they became somewhat respectable except for their smart mouths.

As I’ve gotten older and matured, all I do is show respect to everyone. My minister at my church just told me that I had one of the sweetest personalities he has ever seen. By hearing that, I thought to myself that being deferential to others impacts their lives. Respect is an important value in life because without it, you can lose a lot of valuable things (friends, family, opportunities, etc.) and this is what I believe.