Contact Professionals familiar with the teachings of Verbal Judo should immediately reflect on George Thompson’s great teaching on this point and the difference between respect and RE-spect. If you’re not familiar with it, go here for a perennial classic. If you actually follow the discipline of Verbal Judo, then you know that there are, literally, no times in life when you’re not showing all people (regardless of circumstances) respect.
This is a powerful teaching and one that appears to be treated like holy scripture, that is, where people pick and choose what their egos prefer, leaving out what their ego does not like. Imagine if we suddenly had a pandemic of people treating all others (regardless of circumstances) with dignity by showing them respect. Yes, this could transform what we call everyday reality. Do you realize what stands in the way of transforming reality in this direction, a direction that would contain less conflict in every area of life? I’ll give you a hint; it’s closer to you than you’re own nose.
By the way, I realize (because they’re quick to voice it) that some Contact Professionals like to question the “regardless of circumstances” element. Their critique often falls into one of two buckets. They react by stating “Well, if he’s being a real asshole to me, you expect me to be respectful?” Yes. Train yourself in the psychology and tactics of Verbal Judo and you’ll see why and how (study respect and RE-spect). Or they say, “Well, how am I supposed to be respectful when I have to use force against him/her to stop a threat?” This comment betrays a woefully unsophisticated training methodology and/or an ego-dominated person whose blinders (often collectively shared in an occupation) cannot allow him/her to see other, better, saner ways of being a Contact Professional and Human Being.
It really comes down to whether we strive to be a Contact Professional or merely a contact amateur. The benefits of the work of the former cascade way beyond the immediate situation that s/he is managing. The latter’s work will often leave people worse off. The future is created right now with our actions and thus the Contact Professional and the contact amateur are contributing to the creation of very different futures.
You have to respect every person, no matter how miserable or ridiculous he or she may be. You should remember that in every person lives the same spirit which lives in us.
~ Arthur Schopenhauer