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Old 12-11-2005, 09:14 AM   #1
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Searching For The True Meaning Of Integrity

Rather telling commentary, perhaps. Is integrity becoming so scare that people don't even know what it means? I think so

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20051211/...E0BHNlYwN0bWE-

"But topping the list is a word that some say gives insight into the country's collective concern about its values: Integrity.

The noun, formally defined as a "firm adherence to a code" and "incorruptibility," has always been a popular one on the Springfield-based company's Web site, said Merriam-Webster president John Morse. But this year, the true meaning of integrity seemed to be of extraordinary concern. About 200,000 people sought its definition online.

"I think the American people have isolated a very important issue for our society to be dealing with," Morse said. "The entire list gives us an interesting window that opens up into what people are thinking about in their lives."

Ralph Whitehead, a journalism professor at the University of Massachusetts, said it may indicate the continuing discussion about American values and morality, or perhaps that integrity itself is becoming scarce so its definition is unfamiliar.

"You hope integrity is a word everyone understands," he said."
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Old 12-11-2005, 09:28 AM   #2
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What a profound subject, Mrs. S. It'll be interesting to learn what this all means. If we ever do.
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Old 12-11-2005, 01:49 PM   #3
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The fact that so many people have to look up the meaning of the word indicates that at least that many people don't know what it means.

This is not surprising to me in our world today.
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Old 12-11-2005, 02:13 PM   #4
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Erm. Well, I don't doubt that "integrity", the virtue, is an endangered species, and I'm not surprised that "integrity", the word, is not so well known, but I fail to see what the intrinsic connection between these two would be. "Honesty" and "courtesy" are in trouble these days too, after all, but people still know their dictionary meanings perfectly well. I think it's more that we tend to convey the concepts entailed in "integrity" through other words: clean, upright, trustworthy, lives what he preaches, etc.

Also, the word "integrity" is increasingly used in a very different sense in various science and technology fields, e.g., "data integrity." It also has specific alternative meanings in legal theory (e.g., the common law concept of "bodily integrity") and in various academic fields in the humanities. So, some of the traffic can probably be accounted for by people trying to puzzle out these usages.
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Old 12-11-2005, 02:16 PM   #5
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I've been accused of having very high standards of integrity, which I have for both myself and everyone around me. Maybe that's why I tend to sound misanthropic.

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Old 12-11-2005, 02:25 PM   #6
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Perhaps it's just coincidence, but I have yet to meet an ex-Catholic who doesn't have a hyperacute ear for hypocrisy. I can't really think of anything unique to Catholicism that would explain that, though.
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Old 12-11-2005, 02:28 PM   #7
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Is this going to end up being about Catholicism?

Integrity for me has no gender, race, religion, etc and nothing to do with those factors. It speaks for itself and is up to each individual.
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Old 12-11-2005, 02:34 PM   #8
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I was playfully responding to melon's observation about himself, not making a general suggestion about the sources of integrity or lack of it. Sorry if that didn't come across. And it was a completely sincere question--I wasn't being sarcastic. I am genuinely curious about whether there might be a subcultural/intellectual basis for this.
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Old 12-11-2005, 02:45 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally posted by yolland
I was playfully responding to melon's observation about himself, not making a general suggestion about the sources of integrity or lack of it. Sorry if that didn't come across.
I got it....your post made sense to me....
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Old 12-11-2005, 02:53 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally posted by yolland
I was playfully responding to melon's observation about himself, not making a general suggestion about the sources of integrity or lack of it. Sorry if that didn't come across. And it was a completely sincere question--I wasn't being sarcastic. I am genuinely curious about whether there might be a subcultural/intellectual basis for this.
I understand, I just didn't want it to get derailed into being about Catholicism. I didn't mean it in the way you may have thought, like I have told you I have much respect for the way you conduct yourself on this forum.
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Old 12-11-2005, 03:51 PM   #11
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I just caught the movie "The Family Man" on television a couple of weeks ago.

Don Cheadle plays an angel-like figure. Toward the end of the movie, he is a convenience store clerk who clearly gives $10 extra change to a young women customer. Everyone witnessing the transaction knows it is $10 too much.

As the woman leaves with the extra money, Cheadle comments "she sold her integrity for $10."

I am continually amazed how (i) having high integrity, and (ii) expecting high integrity rubs some people the wrong way or takes them by surprise.
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Old 12-11-2005, 03:58 PM   #12
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i saw that movie

if it is the one with Nick Cage


funny, I don't remember that scene

the movie, to me, was about choosing success, career, over family and love.

love is more important

the woman that got the 10 bucks?

perhaps she needed 10 dollars to buy a prescription for her sick child
and prayed for the $10.

and believed God answered her prayers
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Old 12-11-2005, 04:04 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally posted by nbcrusader


I am continually amazed how (i) having high integrity, and (ii) expecting high integrity rubs some people the wrong way or takes them by surprise.
That is true. Once recently I returned extra change that the person at the movie ticket counter had given me, it was at least 5 dollars, maybe 10..I can't remember. She was stunned and said no one had ever done that before. I am certainly FAR from perfect, I have kept small amounts of too much change, kept a dollar or two that I found on the ground. But I always remember how good that woman at the movies made me feel (same as when I returned a diamond bracelet I found in a theater, of course I would never keep something like that so I have no right to give myself credit for that, and it's just the right thing to do anyway) and try to behave accordingly, and according to the moral standards that I believe in. Of course if I had absolute firm adherence to a code, I would never keep any money I found..so maybe I have zero integrity.

Of course things like that are just a very small part of integrity, it is so much more than that.
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Old 12-11-2005, 04:50 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally posted by MrsSpringsteen

I would never keep any money I found..so maybe I have zero integrity.

if you found a hundred dollar bill

on a deserted beach

keeping it would affect your integrety?
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Old 12-11-2005, 05:00 PM   #15
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On a completely deserted beach where it couldn't have any rightful owner (other than Ana Lucia or anyone else from Lost ) I suppose not, because I'd have no one to return it to. The least selfish and "best" thing to do with the 100 would be to donate it to charity, I would keep it because I'm broke.


I lost 80 dollars in a grocery store once, I got 20 of it back, so obviously someone kept the 60. It wasn't even my money, I was doing my Mother's grocery shopping because she was sick. It is a fairly affluent area so odds are they didn't need the money (one never knows of course, maybe they did) My Mother needed it too though. The way I felt that day, I've never forgotten it. Experience teaches you how to treat others, I think empathy is a critical part of integrity.
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