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Going back to basics - Reclaiming a Jamaica's pride

Published:Monday | April 30, 2012 | 12:00 AM

Steve Lyston, Contributor

WHEN MONEY, fame and power take precedence over core values and morals among the people of a nation, then the nation is on its way to becoming degenerate and corrupt.

Over the last 50 years, we have been subjected to various forms of indiscipline at all levels, many of which have been sucking the nation dry of its resources and beauty. It is time for things to change. But the change can't come until there is a return to core values!

Respect and honour must be shown, first to God, then to our leaders and to each other.

The treatment of leaders during the various enquiries and the last election has brought a curse on the nation.

Public apologies and healing must take place within the nation. Regardless of the number of financial strategies put in place, political instability and erosion of the nation's foundation will continue!

Simple principles

So we need to get back to basics. Simple things such as saying 'good morning' or 'good afternoon' to those we pass should resume. Furthermore, always address people by their titles! 'Mr, Mrs, your honour, sergeant, colonel, president, prime minister, Rev' and so on. Never use the term 'you guys' when addressing your leaders or those above you in a conversation with them.

Always have respect for a person's office (position). You may think they are unworthy of the position, but they are in positions of authority and should you one day be in a position of authority, the treatment you issue will be the same treatment that meets you!

Regardless of the relationship (or lack of one) address your mother and father with respect when speaking to them - especially if you desire to have long life!

Say please, excuse me, and thank you. Don't enter a person's office, home or room without being invited to do so.

Don't take a seat unless invited to do so.

Men: Don't pray or eat with your head covered; once you enter a building remove your hat (or headgear) as a sign of reverence/respect.

Women: When you are in an interview, dress appropriately (nothing too tight, too short or too long). Sit with your legs together.

Men: Unless otherwise instructed, dress professionally for interviews. Do not wear your pants with your underpants exposed, or with the waist of your pants below your buttocks. That style is prison-wear.

Stop using the phones during church services and any other formal functions and gatherings; it shows a lack of respect for God and for those around you.

Get back to the dining table! There are many of our young people who do not know basic table manners. Some don't know how to use a knife and fork, don't know how to sit at the table or that they shouldn't eat and talk at the same time!

Stop chewing gum while talking, it's poor manners.

Young People: When in public (transportation or buildings) always offer a seat to elders, pregnant women and those with disabilities.

Always speak to law-enforcement personnel with respect (whether or not they do the same to you). It works in your favour at all times!

Never be disrespectful to officials or ex-officials. You never know what tomorrow may bring.

Bring order back and form a line when you are in groups waiting. Some people refuse to do it locally, but if it is required overseas they eagerly do so.

Flag Protocol

The flag represents a living country and is itself considered a living thing.

It must be displayed in a manner where all parts/colours can be seen.

It must not touch the ground or floor.

It should not be draped over vehicles, only by military personnel, police or state officials.

It must not be flown during rain and must not be folded when wet.

A salute should be given when the flag is raised or lowered. Furthermore, when the anthem is played and the flag is displayed, all must stand at attention.

The flag must always be used in a dignified manner.

If we - whether public official, the media or John Q. Public - refuse to respect ourselves, each other, and our nation, no one else will. Other nations will disrespect us and ignore our sovereignty.

We must get back to basics.

Steve Lyston is a biblical economics consultant and author of several books, including 'End Time Finance' and 'The New Millionaire'.