The gender-neutrality of the need for respect is articulated beautifully in an article by Perri Klass in the Health Section of yesterday's New York Times. Respect is not just an issue for men -- the oft acknowledged perpetrators of violence -- but also for women. Respect is not just meant to be towards the elderly, it is to be targeted toward peers and parents.
Learning how to genuinely respect others is a lesson that can be applied in so many spheres of life, from riding the bus to marriage. Is respect a rare commodity these days? How far have we strayed from the "Yes, Sir" and "Yes, Mam" days -- and what does it take to instill those values in our children? How do we progress toward a more empowering understanding of both men and women -- so as to not always paint men as the aggressors and women as victims?
What you can do:
Read the NYTimes article. Talk to a young person about respect. Practice respect towards those around you -- whether in your home or on your way home.