A divorced male friend of mine mentioned to me that another male divorcee explained
to him that as a single man he is “shaveh” of great value and that he should
keep this in mind when looking to date. He needs to be aware that he is a greater
commodity than the women he is dating. I was appalled by this blatant disrespect that
one person could have towards another. I quickly interjected that there is no
one person who is more valuable than another. If he wants to assess that a
match is not suitable for him then that is legitimate but he must always have
respect for another individual and behave appropriately.
Of course, while I am writing this I realize that maybe someone out there is thinking
poorly about me or my behavior and wondering how I have the gall to write about
this topic in a critical manner. I guess from recent experience, both in my
personal and professional life, I have come to the conclusion that it really
only takes a moment to show the proper courtesy and respect towards another
human being so why don’t we?
Just as an example of professional disrespect: Someone mentioned to me how they spent time
travelling and attending a job interview and couldn’t understand why the
interviewing side didn’t take the time to show them the courtesy of an email letting them know either way.
As an example of personal disrespect: A close friend of mine was in touch with another person for dating
purposes and couldn’t understand why all of a sudden there was silence on the other end. One side, it
seems, decided that it was not suitable for them but didn’t even do as much as send
an email or SMS to inform the other side. Ignoring is not an acceptable form of
rejection. It exists, but it is cowardly and rude at best.
Israelis have a tendency to look down on manners and polite behavior. It is a high tension
life here in Israel with the political and social situation always contributing
to a life of constant rushing around, yelling and even pushing. Israelis are good
at heart and if you trip and fall a million people will rush over to look after
you, and if your kid wanders off in the mall he/she will have ten mothers taking
care of him in a second, but respect for one another goes far beyond our instinctive
responsive behavior, it is introspective, well thought out and calculated.
And don’t try to slap me with, “well, would you rather someone act politely on the surface and then
ignore you and be distant afterwards???” I don’t understand why that is a
legitimate argument. Don’t people already know that two wrongs don’t make a
right?? Listen, I love to live in Israel but can’t we all just try to show each other the
respect that we as humans should for one another? Be conscious of our actions and I
am sure that with the changes we nurture within ourselves we will also be able
to influence others in kind.