Articles are available for reprint as long as the author is acknowledged: Domenick J. Maglio Ph.D.

Tuesday, July 04, 2017


BY Domenick J. Maglio PhD. Traditional Realist

People are dependent and interdependent on others. The infant is totally dependent on a caretaker to survive. As the child physically matures, the need for a caretaker decreases although psychologically, emotionally socially and safety issues still impact the chances to remain alive and develop into a healthy person. A person needs to have a sense of security and faith in the world around them to blossom.
Obviously parents or another caretaker who stops feeding, protecting or loving the child increases the possibility of the child not prospering and even death. We have learned that children in institutions who are not physically held and caressed can die even when all the physical needs are met. This is called “marasmus.” This shows the importance of caring and stable personal relationships to people’s well-being and ability to function well.
There are too many individual casualties of dysfunctional families who have been neglected, abused or have had their lives shattered by their parents’ divorce. These parents did not keep their sacred word to remain in the marriage until “death does us part.” Divorce is the death of the family, and the eventual destruction of a child’s security. All the flowering rationalizations in the world cannot erase the ongoing pain an individual suffers for their parent’s self-centered breakup of the family.
Breaking of one’s word has significant negative impact on others. When a repairman tells us that we have a two-hour window when he will come, we plan around it. The person has to reschedule life to be there at a specific time so if the repairperson does not show up or give a timely call to reschedule the appointment we are rightfully upset. The customer feels that the individual repairman did not have the decency to call and inform them of his reasons for not showing up.
Being a person of one’s word currently has little dividends in a modern, anonymous society. Our communities currently are spread out in suburban and urban areas. We buy online or in large box stores that are often far from our homes. Our neighbors are not the people we usually interact with in doing business. We download Home Advisor when we need things done around the house.
Rarely do we personally know the person who comes to do the repair, or do they know us. Any person we do not know well can tell us any personal story as well as we can tell them. We have few clues to go on to determine a person’s character except their appearance. We have to accept them on faith.
The problem with the constant assault of people not keeping their word is it affects the public perception of others. It forces most people to ignore this appalling, discourteous and rude behavior. There are too many people resorting to lazy passive lying. The more dishonorable behavior takes place without stigma attached, and no

backlash. This acceptance of not following through on one’s word is going to become more common until it is considered normal.
Once it is widely practiced, an honest person becomes very tempted to do the same, as it is easier not to keep one’s word. Eventually those who keep their word regardless of how hard they struggle their will power to do the right thing dwindles. These people of their word surrender to the easy way of lying to themselves and others.
As the process of lying grows, principled people lose faith in others and themselves to make honest commitments to others and fulfill them. Relationships become harder to forge and keep. Entire communities becomes distrustful of each other, making business and assisting others less likely and more difficult because they do not want to have a shattering let down of despair and depression.
Without individuals going out of the way to keep their integrity by following through on their word, relationships and eventually communities’ adhesiveness erodes and dissolves into personal and community chaos.
The same phenomena can happen in reverse. When the society recognizes and rewards honest citizens who go out of their comfort zone to assist others this behavior will become contagious. We witness this interesting reaction with the campaign of “acts of kindness”.
“Keeping one’s word” may not be as dramatic as acts of kindness although it is a character trait that is indispensable in establishing a solid and kind foundation for relationships in the community.
Domenick Maglio, PhD. is a columnist carried by various newspapers, an author of several books and owner/director of Wider Horizons School, a college prep program. Dr. Maglio is an author of weekly newspaper articles, INVASION WITHIN and a new just published book, entitled, IN CHARGE PARENTING In a PC World. You can visit Dr. Maglio at 


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