Social Question

Hypocrisy_Central's avatar

Do people seem more meanier and nastier today in general?

Asked by Hypocrisy_Central (26829points) October 6th, 2010

Doesn’t it seem that people in general are more meaner and nastier than in times passed those of the Pepsie Generation might be too young to remember that? People use to offer their seat to old people with out having to be asked or shamed into it. You held the door for the next person be it man or woman. You did not cut the line at the bank or the grocery store. You tipped and tipped decent. You did not get pissed of because your order took a little longer than it should or throw a hissy fit because they forgot to leave off the pickles. Kids if they did fight use their knuckles not 9mm. Those are just a few things that seem to change, but today people just seem so much meaner and care less of their fellow man. Does it seem that way to you, and if so how?

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41 Answers

iamthemob's avatar

Not at all. I think a lot of this comes from the fact that we’re transitioning, in many ways, from a single-voiced society to a truly democratic one. But as I’ve grown, I’ve found people generally more and more courteous.

weeveeship's avatar

No. In any generation, you’ve got nice folks and mean folks. Some of the recollections of a bygone era might either be distorted, perhaps due to nostalgia or to fuzzy memory, or they could still be occurring (I saw this one dude give a seat to a old person on the bus the other day.)

Just take a look in history. In let’s say the 1920s-1940s, you’ve got the big monopolists and totalitarian leaders on one hand. On the other, you’ve got people working for peace and justice such as Gandhi.

iamthemob's avatar

Penn & Teller’s show “Bullshit” payed particular attention to the topic of “The Good Old Days,” finding in the end, of course, that the good old days were bullshit.

Frenchfry's avatar

YES!.. The light turns green, two seconds later, people are honking at me.

poisonedantidote's avatar

I would suggest you look in to a term called “confirmation biased”. this is, when you formulate a hypothesis about any given thing, and every time you see something that confirms your hypothesis you remember it, and disregard times when you see something that contradicts your hypothesis.

if you look in to old news stories, you will find plenty of articles on shootings. and if you could travel back in time you would find rude people too.

however, having said that, im still going to go with you on this one and say that yes, there are probably more rude, selfish and violent idiots in the world today than there used to be. but, i think if you take in to consideration increased population, you will probably find that the increase is quite marginal.

mickhock's avatar

I recieved a PM from a “moderator” today and it stated that my light harted banter or my “quips” are not acceptable on fluther.
To be quite frank i think that is pathetic and the “moderator” who sent me the PM has bowed to pressure from someone with a few more of them special fluther points than i have .
Life is full of individual charracters each with a different take on life and to attempt to stunt a persons expression of that take is WRONG.
I have not personally attacked anyone,i have asked some great questions and got some great answers and i am also enjoying myself.
So i say to the “moderator” lighten up we are all individuals . PETTY PETTY PETTY
Oh the question….yes i do feel people are nastier today due to the above.

rooeytoo's avatar

I don’t know about meaner and nastier, but sure as shootin in a bigger hurry. Everyone drives at least 10 KPH over the speed limit and is all over your back if you don’t too.

augustlan's avatar

[mod says] @mickhock How many points a person has is completely irrelevant in our moderation duties. What matters is whether or not you follow the guidelines. If you’d like to discuss this issue further, please PM me.

Fred931's avatar

I still occasionally do those kinds of courtesy things for other people, but not very often. Whenever I did, it met with a lot of reinforcement from my parents, but I guess that hasn’t really hung on.

There will be some nice people wherever you go, like @weeveeship mentioned. ‘Cept for Houston interstate. That’s just a hellhole.

Cruiser's avatar

I don’t see it as “meaner” per se, but I have noticed that manners have gone by the way side and there is a much greater sense of entitlement. Also, the hard work ethic for the sake of a job well done seems pretty much extinct.

jrpowell's avatar

The grass is always greener on the lawn that was last mowed before I was born.

JilltheTooth's avatar

@mickhock : Really? Mod-bashing in this thread? Your comment “PETTY PETTY PETTY” certainly applies, just not quite how you intended it.

JilltheTooth's avatar

@mickhock : Not sucking up, just being a mom.

JilltheTooth's avatar

@mickhock ; And, mom or not, still standing by my statement.

Edit to add: I’ve been modded, too, I just don’t get my knickers in a twist about it.

mickhock's avatar

@JilltheTooth go and make some pants .

iamthemob's avatar


I must withdraw my former answer. It seems that courtesy has fallen by the wayside…

of course…we’re covered here by the anonymity of the internet which makes it easier

ducky_dnl's avatar

Yes! The kids around my age are rude, narcissistic, arrogant little bastards and someone should slap some respect into them. The elementary kids are worse. I went back to my old elementary school to have a conversation with my old teacher. The teacher had a student with her, which I didn’t mind… Until the little kid was butting into our conversation and started questioning me with an attitude. I wanted to beat that little effers ass. What happened to “respect your elders”?

lucillelucillelucille's avatar

No.There are some kind, considerate people out there.

Austinlad's avatar

Not to disagree with the premise of this question because I do believe there is less civility among young and old alike than there used to be, I also think every generation tens to believe the world in general is worse than it ever was. Of course, I remember when Beats and Hippies and Juvenile Delinquents were considered the terrorists of their day—and that was in the ‘50s and ‘60s.

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

Less consideration for other people in general.

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Your_Majesty's avatar

Not meanier and nastier but more apathetic,I guess. I think this could also depends on where or in what community you live in. Some community is better than others in certain things,including morality,and they’re much better in preserving their good traits.

Jude's avatar

I don’t find that to be true. Not here, anyway.

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

@mama_cakes Canadians seem to have more class and consideration than Americans. How’s that for a stereotype?

iamthemob's avatar

Americans are actually considered to be very respectful in comparison to other english-speaking tourists in some Western European countries. While living in the Netherlands for a short time, I expressed concern that we were being to rowdy to a resident. He looked at me and said that Americans were never a concern – the Brits and the Aussies, as he put it, were the real troublemakers.

I use this not to suggest that we are better than the “Brits and Aussies,” of course. ;-) However, for those commenting here on the state of manners in the U.S., we may be judging ourselves more harshly – much more harshly – than we deserve, and a third-party perspective might surprise us as to how generally pleasant we really are.

trailsillustrated's avatar

its the recession

Jude's avatar

@Adirondackwannabe I have to agree with you there.

cookieman's avatar

Fuck You!!

I, I mean, no, not al all (I don’t know what came over me).

mickhock's avatar

@cprevite Steady with the “quips” as there are people on here with NO sense of humour.

gailcalled's avatar

I find that as I age, I become less meanier and less nastier. Therefore I will say nothing about “less meanier,” although it is hard. this remark is not meant to be either nasty, nastier or nastiest.

misstrikcy's avatar

@mickhock Sucking up not intended, but the other day your light hearted banter made me roar with laughter.

Back to the question – Yes, but I can only comment about my observations in England.
I do feel that we have become more rude, more selfish and more ignorant.
Growing up in the 70’s, grown ups were always on at us about holding doors open for others, saying pleases and thank you’s etc etc. I’m not saying it was great, or perfect, but there seemed to be a lot more respect for others (even if it was forced upon us by our parents).
Americans – never ever met one that was in the slightest bit rude. I have found them to be extremely courteous people.

tinyfaery's avatar

For every rude asshole there is a decent, courteous person. Hopefully, we at least even out in the end.

@johnpowell Haha.

rooeytoo's avatar

@tinyfaery – that means you and I probably are evening right this minute, hehehe!

NaturallyMe's avatar

I don’t think meaner or nastier (in general), but definitely more rude.

iamthemob's avatar

I am watching “Lost in Austen” right now on Netflix. It is about a modern girl who gets trapped in Pride and Prejudice and musses everything up because of the restriction of manners. It shows how “polite society” is kind of a misnomer.

As stated by Cordelia in one of my favorite lines from Buffy – “Tact is just not saying true stuff. No thanks.” ;-)

mattbrowne's avatar

No, but more and more people find it hard to slow down their thoughts. Decelerating from life’s fast lanes becomes more and more difficult.

Hypocrisy_Central's avatar

@NaturallyMe Is not meaner and nastier just byproducts of rudeness, or is it the other way around? Ummmmm…............

Hypocrisy_Central's avatar

20/20 had a segment on tonight about bullying and it seems kids at least are getting nastier and meaner, not only do many think it makes them seem cooler but with the Internet they can do their dirt 24/7 and over a wider range.

rooeytoo's avatar

You certainly hear more about bullying these days and more disasters are blamed on it. Seems as if there were bullys around when I was a kid, I remember being chased by one nasty boy many times, he would do things like push you down in a mud puddle or dog poop. But I was lucky I was little and fast, he was big and clumsy so he rarely caught me.

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