Sure, manners matter, but they shouldn’t be expected all the time
By Jessica Berget, Opinions Editor
Being the editor of the Opinions section, I always knew my works would be subject to criticisms and people would disagree with some (okay, most) of the things I write about. However, I never thought my piece on my dislike of the word “please” would be the straw that broke the camel’s back.
Evidently, people are more passionate about manners and politeness than I thought. I didn’t even think this opinion was so contentious until I talked about it with other people and they were offended that I believe it. After debating the subject with others, I feel the need to clarify my stance.
Sure, manners do matter. Holding the door open for someone matters. Saying thank you when someone does something for you matters. Saying please or thank you every single time you ask someone to do something, that does not matter. It’s something that should be nice to say once in a while, but we shouldn’t expect it constantly. In addition, I think if these words are overused, they lose their meaning.
I would agree that “please” is a nice thing to say to someone, but I’m not going to expect to hear it every time. It’s a word that sounds too aggressively polite to me. I’ll say it once in a while if the mood is right, but I don’t feel it’s always necessary.
Sure, it’s pleasant to hear “please” sometimes, but generally I don’t mind not hearing it either. Honestly, it doesn’t make a whiff of a difference to me whether someone says “please” or not. As long as they ask nicely “Could you do this for me?” I’m happy. I’d be glad to help a person out if I can, and I don’t need to hear “please” to be inclined to do so, but that’s just me. I also think “thank you” is necessary in some situations, but not all the time.
“Please” is a frivolous word. I don’t understand why it’s considered polite to say it but impolite to omit it. I’m essentially asking for the same thing, so what does it matter if there is one pointless word in my sentence or not? On another note, I think it’s incredibly rude to call people out on it if they don’t say it.
The next time you find yourself getting upset that someone didn’t say “please” when asking for something, ask yourself: Is it really worth getting mad about one silly word? I don’t think so. So, stop expecting people to say it all the time.