08 abril 2006

Boas maneiras e o igualitarismo

"The argument goes something like this: formality is etiquette, and etiquette is a manifestation of an unjust, class-ridden, patriarchal society. The rejection of etiquette and the formality it entails is therefore a sign that one is on the side of the angels, that is to say, of the egalitarians. Modern egalitarians, at least in Britain, do not content themselves with the kind of abstract or formal equality before the law that allows any amount of difference in wealth, status, taste, and sensibility; they demand some progress towards equalization of everything, including manners."

Imaginem se o autor desse texto visita o Rio de Janeiro!

"In Britain, this has led in short order to the rejection of the most elementary of social rules. Young Britons now appear to think, for example, that the function of empty seats on trains is as a receptacle for their feet. (Why they should be the footweariest generation in history is a mystery, unless their behavior is considered as a deliberate challenge to convention.) A passenger who draws the attention of a young adult to the anti-social presence of his feet upon a seat will be met either by a torrent of abuse or, if the person doing it is better-educated, by moral self-justification. The last time I said anything about it, the young woman in question, by no means unpleasant, pointed out that her feet were clean, she having first removed her shoes, and that therefore she was within her rights. I was left searching for a Cartesian point from which to prove beyond all possible doubt that putting your feet up on seats in trains was wrong. It is a wearisome business trying to prove from first epistemological principles in every instance of minor public misconduct that it is morally wrong, especially when every failure to make the case is a justification for further such misconduct. It is strange how egalitarianism results in a rabid form of individualism, an angry individualism without worthwhile individuality."

Aqui, sem saber, ele descreveu o carioca:

"The distinction between friendliness and friendship becomes blurred so that it is no longer even perceived."