Definition of a Gentleman

Definition of a Gentleman - Mark Mizzer Vicario 12-3-07...

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Mark Mizzer Vicario 12-3-07 Final Copy Definition of a Gentleman Robert Edward Lee’s definition of a gentleman is: “The forbearing use of power does not only form a touchstone, but  the manner in which an individual enjoys certain advantages over others is a test  of a true gentleman.   The power which the strong have over the weak, the employer over the  employed, the educated over the unlettered, the experienced over the confiding,  even the clever over the silly - the forbearing or inoffensive use of all of this power  or authority, or a total abstinence from it when the case admits it - will show the  gentleman in a plain light.   The gentleman does not needlessly and unnecessarily remind an offender  of a wrong he may have committed against him. He cannot only forgive, he can  forget; and he strives for that nobleness of self and mildness of character which  impart sufficient strength to let the past be but the past.  A true man of honor  feels humbled when he cannot help humbling others (Shelton 109).” Over time, Robert E. Lee’s ideals and beliefs about what a gentlemen is and does has become lost. I believe that men in today’s society have become more concerned over what is considered politically correct, or the type of vehicle they drive, or how soon they
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can close the deal with whatever female they may be pursuing at that time. We have lost many social skills in recent decades. Ideals such as politeness, manners, civility, Mizzer-2- courtesy, and chivalry- all characteristics of a gentleman- seem to be laughable ideas in modern America. An increasing number of young men and women seem to be raised with a sense of entitlement and we need be reminded of a time when basic social skills were less confusing and when the term “politically correct” did not exist. The challenge for us is whether we can successfully adapt to how the world actually functions in relation to what we learned as children. For men, one of the biggest obstacles is whether we should still incorporate the virtues of chivalry into our daily behavior. This is a practice that now seems to be in transition and, maybe in a hundred years (much like the
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This essay was uploaded on 03/30/2008 for the course ENGL 015 taught by Professor Stjean,shawnr during the Fall '07 term at Penn State.

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Definition of a Gentleman - Mark Mizzer Vicario 12-3-07...

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