Respectfully Yours

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“One of the reasons we promote unity on this day is to learn more about each other. Once people know more about someone they didn't understand before, it's easier to establish respect and friendship.”(Marsala) Once you know a bit more about someone else, you can start to create respect and a friendship with that person. When you understand and respect yourself, you can start to respect others. In literature, films, history and in personal experiences, one can see that humans have the desire for respect but learning more about others, can create a better understanding of them.

First, Flowers For Algernon(Keys) is the story of Charlie Gordon and is a superior example of respect. Charlie Gordon is a one of a kind mentally challenged man with an I.Q. of 68. Charlie Gordon had an amazing surgery which tripled his I.Q. to well over 200. He loved life, his “friends” and learning new things before his surgery. He thought he had loyal, respectful “friends.” With his low I.Q. of 68, Charlie didn’t know why his friends laughed often or smirked secretly. “Now I know what it means when they say “to pull a Charlie Gordon.” I’m ashamed.” (Keys 212, 213) He loved going out to parties and restaurants with them, even when he was left standing waiting for the snow to fall. Charlie didn’t know much about his friends before his surgery. When Charlie had his tripling IQ surgery he realized what kind of people his friends were. He realized that his friends didn’t respect him and his mental disability. Once he learned to respect himself he started to respect others, for example, Mrs. Kinnian, his teacher and first love.

Next, in Geek Charming(Palmer), a nerdy kid runs into the most popular person in his school, who accidentally throws her “one of a kind” designer bag into a fountain. Hysterically, she screams at him to get her purse. He says he’ll get her bag for only one catch, “I’ll do it if you let me film you and your friends.”(Palmer 13). Josh gets to film Dylan, the popular girl, and her friends and digs into their personal lives a little. When Dylan learns that Josh isn’t as nerdy as they thought he was, she and her friends start to respect him. Dylan learns that the “geek”, as she called him, wasn’t as uncool, and as geeky as she thought. Josh gets the back seat to the popular kids lives and learns the ups and downs. While he tries to help with break ups and make ups, Dylan learns that sometimes the nerdy kids can sparingly be fun to hang with. Josh and Dylan learn that everyone is just human and respect is key to being friends.

Another example of wanting respect is shown in Legally Blond 2. Elle Woods was a girl with a dream when she headed out to Washington D.C. to change some laws. Her plan didn’t turn out so well when she didn’t have the people supporting her or the respect she needed. Elle was an L.A. sorority girl and no one thought she had what it took to make it in Washington D.C. That all changed when she persevered and pushed her bill up to Congress. “Reena? Can you be a pal and read me what I’m doing a week from tomorrow...” said Elle. “9:00 sample wedding cake frosting, 11:00 commoners committee hearing...” said Reena. “Ya can you go back to that one at 11:00? What was that?” said Elle. “11:00 commoners committee hearing!” said Reena. “Nice try but you have to get a bill before you get a hearing.” said Grace. “Like this one?” said Elle.(Legally Blond 2) Elle finally got the respect she deserved and made some new friends when she got her bill all the way to the court. Grace didn’t follow Elle in the beginning but was on her side in the end. Elle Woods wanted and needed the respect and friendship of her coworkers and legislators to get her bill passed. In the end, she was a success in Washington D.C.

Furthermore, leaders around the world have wanted respect from other countries for centuries. There have been thousands of wars over respect and one that affects us in particular, The Revolutionary War. "That all men are by nature equally free and independent, and have certain inherent rights… namely, the enjoyment of life and liberty, with the means of acquiring and possessing property, and pursuing and obtaining happiness and safety."(Virginia Bill of Rights, Quotes) When we declared war against Britain we wanted the respect from them to govern our own country. We sought our independence from Britain, because they didn’t consider us worthy to be treated equally. In the end we got our independence and respect from Britain so we could govern our own country. In today, not only do we have the respect for Britain, now we are allies with them.


Lastly, in my own life respect and friendship play a huge role. When moving to a new place, like when I moved here to Utah, I wanted respect and friendship from my new peers. I tried to be very friendly, since I was only in fifth grade, and interested in the things they were. Nowadays, in the teenage world, I see kids achieving honor rolls to gain respect from their friends. I personally try to get great grades and do well on tests and homework, so my friends can respect me and my actions. I also try to be kind and nice to my peers, help out when I am needed and cooperate while when working. As you can see, I also desire respect and friendship from my peers and classmates and I try to give it equally.

To sum it up, one can see that humans have the desire for respect but learning more about others can create an attitude of admiration towards each other. As people share their life experiences, their values, their beliefs and their desires for respect, people can see that almost everyone has appreciated others in one way or another. Learn a little more about someone before you judge or become friends with them.





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