Respecting Authority

Respecting Authority

  • Introduction and Definition
    • Definition: To feel or show esteem, honor, and appreciation for.
      • Obedience is usually the best way to show respect.
    • Without order nothing could be accomplished. Without authority there can be no order
  • Notes for Mentor-Student discussion
    • Ask the students and mentors to describe a world with out rules
      • This can be tough with younger immature children, so the mentors will probably need to lead this discussion
      • If there were no traffic laws
        • All the roads would be full of accidents. No one would know when to stop and go, or which direction the other car plans on going. Everybody would travel at different rates of speeds and faster drivers would get mad slower drivers.
      • If there were no police or fire departments
        • There would be no stores because of thieves
        • Violence would rule the world
        • Your mothers and sisters would never be safe for attackers
        • Houses would burn down
        • Sick people would die before they could get to hospitals
      • If there were no teachers
        • Children would have to go to work at low paying jobs
        • Most of us would never learn to read, write or do math
          • This would put us at the mercy of the educated
    • Students and mentors should make a list of authorities that should be obeyed.
      • Parents
      • Police & Fire
      • Teachers
      • Coaches, umpires, and referees
    • Authority and rules make all good things possible
    • Ask the students and mentors to gives some examples of where order and authority has helped them.
  • Notes for general group discussion
    • Why are rules and the authorities who enforce them important?
    • Give some examples of rules that you like
    • Give some examples of rules that you may not like but that you know are good for you
  • Summary points
    • We all need rules and people to enforce them. While not all people use their authority properly, most do and they deserve our respect.
    • Walk away line: The authorities are here to help us.

Respecting Authority Continued...

1.   Explain to your student what respect is (Webster’s defines it as “to consider worth of esteem”). All people deserve respect, but some deserve more respect than others.

 2.   Parents should be respected at all times. They chose to bring us into the world and have provided for us since our birth. More importantly, they usually care about us more than anyone else.
3.   Teachers are people who are here to help us. They are highly educated individuals, who choose to share their knowledge with their students. An education is the most valuable asset a person can possess (next to a good character), and we need to appreciate their contribution to us.
4.   Similarly, public officials like police and firemen also deserve our respect. Each and every day many of these men and women risk their lives to help strangers. Like teachers they choose to serve others, and for that they deserve our respect.
5.   Remind your student that respect is different from liking someone. We respect someone because of who they are or for the office they hold. We may not like an individual teacher or police officer, but we need to respect them because, without them the world would be a very bad place.
6.   Obedience is also an important virtue to master. Freedom requires order, order requires rules, and rules require someone to enforce them. When we obey a parent, teacher, police officer we are really helping ourselves.

7.   Ask your students to determine three ways they can be more respectful to their parents, teachers
, and peers.


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