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Northwest Voices

Seattle Times letters to the editor

June 21, 2013 at 6:30 AM

Teaching children good manners

Bad manners abound

To answer Lynne Varner’s question “Are we teaching kids manners these days?,” the answer in many cases is, sadly, no. [“Blog: Wanted: kids with manners,” Opinion, June 20.]

A recent McDonald’s commercial shows a boy bonding with his dad by blowing bubbles in his drink in public, much to the toothy-grinned delight of his dad. Worse, have you ever been treated to a free back massage by a kid pounding on the back of your seat in a restaurant or aboard a plane, or had your eardrums pierced by a kid yelling at the top of his or her voice while playing tag in a store aisle, all while a parent is nearby but “busy” doing other things?

As a teacher, I remember being in a parent-teacher conference a few years ago about a minor offense the child had committed. I was treated to a tirade by a fuming, yelling parent, who within a few seconds berated the teachers, principal and school for daring to discipline her child. The principal promptly told us to go back to class, and the meeting was over.

Many kids today get their manners from television, the baby-sitter of choice in many American households. Have you ever been to a youth sporting event and seen parents acting like unbridled children? Rudeness is alive and well in our country. Miss Manners, where are you?

Ronald Bowman, Burien

Comments | Topics: children, courtesy, kids

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