top of page


Respecting Respect

When the foundation of a nation fails one of the first cracks is lack of respect.

If right and wrong are negotiable and morals a nasty word, respect isn’t necessary.

I thought i’d post this picture as an example.

I’ve posted it before and am guessing the same thing will happen this time as last in the comment section, lets watch and see.

My family has a home on the Oregon coast. The houses are close together and ours on the beachfront.

They bought the place more than 50 years ago and the last two decades we’ve noticed a total lack of respect on the part of visitors.

You can see how close the houses sit. We put up signs because folks walk between our homes, past windows, walk by the front of our house and stand and stare inside…..while we are looking back.

The signs clearly ask people to stay off our property and use one of the many beach access points up and down the area.

We never used to need signs.

People understood walking in-between people’s houses, looking in their windows and peeing on their homes was wrong.

But that was then, not now.

There’s a reason for the signs.

The state forced us to plant dune grass in front of our property to help stabilize the sand. It’s expensive and time consuming. We originally put up wooden posts with rope to keep people from trampling the grass, destabilizing the dune project.

There was still hundreds and hundreds of feet of beach to walk on. This in no way obstructed anyones access but only helped protect an environmental project. The property we roped off is also our private property. But the disrespectful took pictures that made it look like we were closing off the beach. Facts don’t matter.

The backlash was unbelievable. They called us every name in the book including “Rich Californians buying up the beach” when we are native Oregonians who’ve had this place longer than any of them have been on this earth.

It got so bad we took the fence posts down and sure enough, the “disrespectful complainers” walked right over the grass, paying no attention to the signs.

But in this lack of respect and ignorance of boundaries, many people have little concern for what belongs to others. They must think the sign is asking others not to disrespect the owners wishes because surely it doesn’t mean them?

Timber companies close off land they used to open, why? Because the disrespectful dump garbage on the timber companies property so the gates get locked and people wonder why access in Oregon continues to dwindle.

Lack of respect is a huge problem, that and consistency. You can’t plead for the environment and cry for the ocean while at the same time verbally bludgeoning landowners trying to do their part to protect both.

I know, you didn’t know the reason for the signs because you didn’t ask.

Instead you assumed you knew best.

This is an example, just one, of the crumbling of a culture.

You can’t assume everyone who owns something you don’t owes you access, because they don’t.

How do you rebuild the concept of respect? Can you?

147 views4 comments

Recent Posts

See All


Nov 19, 2022

Sorry you had to endure the disrespect. I have seen it for decades in my jobs in private and public sector both. Disrespect and put-downs are common now in the public spaces, airwaves and in print from all extremes. "Do unto others..." is lacking.


Nov 18, 2022

Respect is lacking everywhere. On the highways, in restaurants, in schools, etc. The Golden Rule has been lost and replaced with the "me" generation. I taught my kids to respect others and I am sure that you did too but we were part of a generation that was also taught respect when we were kids. As an LEO, I saw the lack of respect first hand in homes with kids disrespecting their parents. I arrested thousands of people who disrespected others by committing thefts, driving drunk and in a few cases, committing homicide. And it seems to have only gotten worse with the lack of consequences for illegal behavior. Before I retired in 2003, I got a call…


Recently traveling in Scotland provided a great contrast to what is happening here. The worst public restroom we went in in Scotland was cleaner and more undamaged than any public restroom you will find in Oregon (Oklahoma has a pretty nice one or I would have said the US). Secondly, for example, it is actually against the law to spit in public. In one city I saw a local chase down a tourist and get after him for spitting on the sidewalk. There is an unspoken but deeply held characteristic found in their culture that they respect their public resources, they respect one another's private property, and they follow rules. You seldom see cops, because they are not nearly as…


I too grew up visiting this same beach, dory fishing in the mid 70’s. At that time salmon were abundant and there were literally 100’s of boats launching here daily during the summer months. Most(not all) of the users were native Oregonians that had respect for others and their property but also the gift of using the natural resources bestowed on us. Doors were unlocked but all understood boundaries and expectations, treating everyone like we would want to be treated. I also attended public schools where we learned at an early age to show respect to not only the teachers and staff but also fellow students as well as our neighbors and visitors.

In all cases there were consequences for not…

bottom of page