"Intelligence is when you spot a flaw in your boss's reasoning.
Wisdom is when you refrain from pointing it out."
Our class volunteered to prepare materials for those who are going to take the upcoming bar exams. It was just like a camaraderie building activity. Our professor became the topic of discussion at one point, so I was listening keenly on what my classmates had to say:
"He's such an ass."
"He always makes fun of us."
"He has an "F defect!" He pronounces f as p as in "suffort for support and haffen for happen."
"He has problems with his subject verb agreements, how can he write a book?"
Frankly, I don't mind the occasional lapses in our prof's grammar. Everyone makes mistakes once in a while. Only Grammar Nazzis take pride in spreading those kinds of negativity. Unless your job is a copy editor paid to massacre another person's work, I believe in the exercise of tolerance and diplomacy.
Maybe my classmates were so quick to point out the negative about our professor because of lack of
respect. True, professors can be authoritative in class by using an overblown, swaggering style in conducting recitations (as most law professors often do), but that in itself, does not guarantee respect.
Respect shows one's greatness. It is shown by being fair and just. It is shown by being calm under pressure. You know you are respected when people look up to you. They want to be like you because they have faith in your ability to impart knowledge and simplify what is hard and complex.
We treat people with civility in general, but genuine respect emanates out of concern and empathy. It is measured by how we treat our co-equals and most especially, our subordinates.
Genuine respect is earned, not demanded. It is so easy to forget, especially for teachers of law who are so concerned with "putting on a show," rather than teaching. They forget that by treating their students like crap - they will get the same crap - maybe not inside the classroom, but once they turn their back.