Why do we become so intolerant as we age?

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  #1  
Old 02-07-2011, 09:34 AM
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Default Why do we become so intolerant as we age?

I've noticed this here and throughout TV. I hate when people start name-calling or denigrating someone because someone has a different viewpoint. I always thought that as people age, they would become more tolerant of others. They've made mistakes and should understand others will, too. They did stupid things when young and should help youth grow, not condemn youth for growing up and being different. I don't get it.

It seems that some think that getting old gives them the right to be downright rude. They're mean to store clerks. They yell at someone who gets in their way or goes too slow for their tastes. I don't get it.

I have Asperger's (high-functioning autism). I have a tendency to blurt out what I think but I do try to not be hateful or hurtful. I don't judge you for having different political views than I do. I do judge your words and actions. If you accuse someone of "pandering" because they have a different opinion than you, you lose my respect. If you can't understand that even a professional can muck up a song out of nerves, you appear to have a mean streak. If you berate the checker at the grocery store for not being to accept your coupon, you appear overbearing and rude. If you honk because someone isn't moving fast enough for you, you appear arrogant and impatient. If you put down teens because they hang around the Squares in groups, don't dress like you think they should, play music you don't like, then you appear small-minded.

Why is it so hard to let others be different from you as you age? So what if I don't share your political viewpoint? So what if I like happen to like rap music and you don't? So what if someone isn't as fast as you? Why is it okay for you to say what you think and feel, but not someone else? What happened to respect, tolerance? I really don't get it.
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  #2  
Old 02-07-2011, 10:05 AM
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Default I think...........

that this problem is because we build our life to suit us and surround ourselves with people and places that fit in. For instance if we are church goers, we see a lot of like minded people on a regular basis. If we are active in a political party, than of course we have those folks who agree with us.

We begin to believe that most people are on the same wave lengths as us and another thing that makes us intolerant of situations that young people are more tolerant of is that we see the same mistakes being made year after year and decade after decade. We sort of say to ourselves, I think I know how THIS is going to turn out.

The young are full of hope and dreams and will wade in to almost impossible situations hoping to make them better. Most of us have done that and maybe did change the world too, but many of us have seen that the problems we wish we could solve are about the same. Young people think that we might be able to establish peace in the world. We have seen this is NOT the case and we are pretty sure who is causing the problems. (We may not agree with each other on that, but we are pretty sure, none the less)

We have thought it through, time and time again and we have made up our minds that some groups of folks just aren't doing it right.

It never, EVER occurs to any of us that WE might be wrong.
  #3  
Old 02-07-2011, 10:16 AM
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But why does that give us the right to be rude, mean-spirited, downright beligerent?

Gracie, a lot of what you say makes sense and helps me to understand it a little, but it really saddens me that we're that way. I still think we should be more accepting, tolerant instead of closing up and shutting down the way so many of us do. (Glad there are folks like you who do let others think and feel differently. It would be a truly awful world without you and your kind.)
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  #4  
Old 02-07-2011, 10:26 AM
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Today's Non Sequitur from the comics......

http://www.gocomics.com/nonsequitur/
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  #5  
Old 02-07-2011, 10:31 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by redwitch View Post
I've noticed this here and throughout TV. I hate when people start name-calling or denigrating someone because someone has a different viewpoint. I always thought that as people age, they would become more tolerant of others. They've made mistakes and should understand others will, too. They did stupid things when young and should help youth grow, not condemn youth for growing up and being different. I don't get it.



It seems that some think that getting old gives them the right to be downright rude. They're mean to store clerks. They yell at someone who gets in their way or goes too slow for their tastes. I don't get it.

I have Asperger's (high-functioning autism). I have a tendency to blurt out what I think but I do try to not be hateful or hurtful. I don't judge you for having different political views than I do. I do judge your words and actions. If you accuse someone of "pandering" because they have a different opinion than you, you lose my respect. If you can't understand that even a professional can muck up a song out of nerves, you appear to have a mean streak. If you berate the checker at the grocery store for not being to accept your coupon, you appear overbearing and rude. If you honk because someone isn't moving fast enough for you, you appear arrogant and impatient. If you put down teens because they hang around the Squares in groups, don't dress like you think they should, play music you don't like, then you appear small-minded.

Why is it so hard to let others be different from you as you age? So what if I don't share your political viewpoint? So what if I like happen to like rap music and you don't? So what if someone isn't as fast as you? Why is it okay for you to say what you think and feel, but not someone else? What happened to respect, tolerance? I really don't get it.
Well said, Red!
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  #6  
Old 02-07-2011, 10:31 AM
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Default An interesting question.

I figure that as long as anyone sees life as black/white, right.wrong, they will always think of others as us/them. If we keep our ideas categorized in boxes then it does make life and our responses easier and as we get older, perhaps this process makes our daily living easier in some respects. We don't have to "decide" or "think about" what drives our choices.

The word "tolerance" is often used in these kinds of discussions, and I guess that is a first step, but it feels to me like tolerating is really just "putting up with" which really doesn't get us out of the us/them paradigm.

If we could move to a paradigm that saw us all as equal at the core, with each of us expressing ourselves in our own unique way, perhaps we could appreciate each person as the unique expression of human being that s/he is. And I think that at our core, on some level, we probably all think we are doing that....well perhaps not all LOL.

I'll get off my soap box now before this gets too heavy. Good qustion, Redwitch and thanks for asking and giving me something to consider, especially when I watch the young people in positions of authority......who seem to be getting younger daily.

LW888
  #7  
Old 02-07-2011, 10:34 AM
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Default Good one! pooh




Quote:
Originally Posted by pooh View Post
Today's Non Sequitur from the comics......

http://www.gocomics.com/nonsequitur/
  #8  
Old 02-07-2011, 10:50 AM
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Default Boy, you said it! lightworker

I would only add that sometimes geography might answer this conundrum..
Lack of tolerance and patience due to a faster pace of life style brings out the beast in some of us (Not an excuse just an opinion)....An overused cliche, but "Life is short", why not stop and smell the roses and be a good boy and girl, who knows maybe a random act of kindness might infect this "frumpy" old fart and metamorphose into a "Gracie-girl"...We can only hope!





Quote:
Originally Posted by lightworker888 View Post
I figure that as long as anyone sees life as black/white, right.wrong, they will always think of others as us/them. If we keep our ideas categorized in boxes then it does make life and our responses easier and as we get older, perhaps this process makes our daily living easier in some respects. We don't have to "decide" or "think about" what drives our choices.

The word "tolerance" is often used in these kinds of discussions, and I guess that is a first step, but it feels to me like tolerating is really just "putting up with" which really doesn't get us out of the us/them paradigm.

If we could move to a paradigm that saw us all as equal at the core, with each of us expressing ourselves in our own unique way, perhaps we could appreciate each person as the unique expression of human being that s/he is. And I think that at our core, on some level, we probably all think we are doing that....well perhaps not all LOL.

I'll get off my soap box now before this gets too heavy. Good qustion, Redwitch and thanks for asking and giving me something to consider, especially when I watch the young people in positions of authority......who seem to be getting younger daily.

LW888
  #9  
Old 02-07-2011, 11:17 AM
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Default I Love That!

Pooh,
That cartoon really made my day!
Personally, my journey has been about learning to allow people to think, do and be, even if I think it's ass backward. I used spend a lot of energy attempting to EDUCATE them, soothe them, HEAL them somehow. (in my foolish youth) In later years tried to learn to simply TOLERATE them, (worked for them but not me, my solar plexis was in havoc most often!)
Now I realize that my personal harmonics are more important to me and more worthy of my time and attention than dealing with THEIR dramas, so I turn my attention and energy to thoughts and things that please, and surprisingly, I encounter less and less of that disharmony. People who behave badly seem to gravitate somewhere else.... not in my experience.

The contrast has served to show me what I want in my daily life. May sound like I'm putting my head in the sand, but I keep remembering that all have free will and I realized if my free will is to be happy, who am I to tell someone they can't have the free will to be miserable?
I just choose not to 'dance' with them.
So, be of good cheer. Your happiness is your own, unless you give it away.
  #10  
Old 02-07-2011, 11:18 AM
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Red there seem to be alot of angry people here. I've noticed it too many times.
If you start a conversation people are usually friendly and polite but other times it seems that by their actions and even the expressions on their faces many people have alot on their minds. Perhaps it's the aging process we're all going through, maybe it's physical ailments that are unseen. In any case, in this place of near paradise, you'd think the populace would be happy. Unfortunately that isn't the case for too many people. Too bad. This is about as good as it's going to get.
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Old 02-07-2011, 11:20 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by redwitch View Post
.......So what if I like happen to like rap music and you don't?........
Wow! I didn't know you liked rap music, red!!

Good post - and many good replies by others. I wish I had the answer(s).

I've got my opinions/thoughts/insights/perspectives/etc. on things - everyone does. But I'll never force them on anybody. And most of the time, I'll never really voice them. Those who know me well have insight on those types of things without ever having directly discussed them. You pick up on things just by being around a person enough. Sure, I'll offer them as input and hope they're interpreted as such. But I'll usually distance myself from people who are generally negative or continually overly opinionated (to the point that discussions of any depth can wind up as arguments). I guess I'm not cut out to be much of a debater!! To quote Rodney King: ".....can we all get along?" That's what I usually try to do.

Bill
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Old 02-07-2011, 11:21 AM
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Good morning friends in The Villages.

Here I sit in my lovely home that is on the market, hopefully it sells quickly so I can join you in The Villages. Here comes another Californian.

Redwitch I love your posts. You show compassion, understanding, tolerance and non judgment in your posts and I thank you.

In Jan I turned 60 and for some reason I experienced much reflection of my life and the lives of those I have encountered currently and from the past. This past year has been a difficult year for our family. My little grandson was born prematurely, had a hole in his heart, spent the first six weeks of his life in ICU, had his first open heart surgery at four weeks of age. When the little guy was eight months old he had his second open heart to repair the hole in his heart. Needless to say it has been a heck of a year. My ex husband who is Muslim, leftists, arrogant, chauvinist, opinionated and just darn different was in the picture during our grandsons surgical procedures. Obviously not my favorite person on this earth. However, he has his good points, hard worker, tax payer, loves his child and grandson.

There were times that my ex shared his political views, I knew that he was feeling scared and insecure about his grandson being hospitalized, talking politics was easy for him to feel empowered in a situation that he had no power. What I do when I encounter difficult people who are intolerant, bitter, angry, controllers or just miserable humans. I thank my lucky stars that I'm not them and hopefully I can use them as an example of what I don't want to be. I'm not perfect either folks.

They say as we grow older the road becomes more narrow. It's my opinion the road broadens, I have been given so many choices and an abundant life. I want to think outside the box, I want to feel and experience this marvelous life on earth.

With our decision to move to Florida, many people have been negative about our move. I find their judgment entertaining and comical. Im just amazed by their negativity and their need to place their value of life on me. I simply ignore their opinions and roll my eyes sometimes internally and externally. I'm so excited about my broad highway of life. I'm looking forward to playing golf, dancing in the squares with abandon, water volleyball and making new friends in The Villages.

I'm off this morning to watch my little grandson in his music class. I'm going to be a one year old too.
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Old 02-07-2011, 11:26 AM
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Default uptown girl,

That's the way it works. When you move in harmony, harmony becomes the way of your world and the ones that are not in that "song" seem to go elsewhere. They are in their own "song" and have their own "harmonics" with them. That's a great metaphor and really explains "The Law of Attraction" which has become more mainstream of late. Sounds like our "songs" are in harmony. Maybe there is a bigger choir out there than we know in TV. Maybe we should start a club LOL. In fact I believe that there are a few already going that are singing the same tune or something similar. But enough of this singing, I'm looking forward to the dancing when I get back in April!

LW888
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Old 02-07-2011, 11:56 AM
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Thank you all for your replies. I can't say I quite understand, yet, but it's given me some food for thought.

I'm one of those who has to state her opinion. Couldn't stop myself if I tried. It is a part of me, my core nature. I don't try to shove it in someone's face, I just let you know what I think. (Don't ever ask me if I like what you're wearing -- if I don't, I will tell you.)

Sometimes it is hard to live in a community where I see and hear people call others a name because their opinion is different. I'll be the one in the middle butting in and trying to stop the namecalling. I HATE it!!!! I hate blatent rudeness. I hate when someone acts like they're better than someone else because they think they have more. I LOATHE bullies in all forms.

I love TOTV and the people here. However, when people start getting mean, I don't get it. I used to enjoy the Political Forum. We'd get our viewpoints out with a lot of humor and fun thrown in. Then, it just became mean. The comments against Obama were over the top. The remarks against Palin made little sense. I left that forum and have not missed it. Occasionally, someone forgets these forums are not the political forum and acts as if it is. The namecalling starts. The pettiness is non-stop. The meanness is painful.

I love TV, the generosity of the people here, the willingness to laugh at one self, all of it. But, I've seen some of the meanest people I've ever been around here. If you don't agree with their religious, political, social beliefs, you're absolute slime and they let you know it. I find these people to be very small and I truly feel sorry for them, but I don't understand them at all.

I try to let my world grow. It was always a very black and white world (Aspies are that way -- there's right and there's not right and you have to correct the not right.) I'm learning there are grays everywhere. I can't say that I embrace the grays, but at least I understand they exist.

And, Bill, yes, I like rap. Actually, I love rap. When Jess was about 12, she got into emo music. I don't handle emotions well (again, an Aspie trait) and I found the music to be poppish, syrupy drivel. To get her away from it, I introduced her to rap. I taught her the history of the music; what the lyrics meant, the good and the bad of those lyric;, where a curse word was used to be effective and have meaning, where it was used just because the rapper could. I also love jazz, classical, tenors singing opera and I used to love the oldies, but TV OD'd me on that one. My favorite music is blues.

I have people in TV I consider my friends. I accept them as they are -- my sweet, innocent angel lover; my angry, hurt ex-military wife; my "leader of the pack" (always giving, always accepting, always kind); my man-hunting, goofy buddy; my friend who thinks God is the answer to all problems and tries to steer everyone to her church; my buddy who truly accepts everyone into his group and has the patience of at least 3 saints with Ghandi thrown in for good measure; even my ultra-conservative neighbor with the heart of gold. I don't try to change them. I accept and love them for who they are. So, if I can do it with a true affliction that makes it even harder for me to understand emotions, why is it so hard for a "normal" to accept others without being mean? See, I still don't get it. lol
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Old 02-07-2011, 12:05 PM
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Regardless of our age, we tend to judge ourselves by our intentions and we judge others by their actions.

Once we realize that, we becoe more thoughtful and tolerant.
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