Hats Off?
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04-12-2013, 05:18 PM
Hats Off?
For some reason, even though I've not had to deal with this in many years (I think) it still bothers me that some people still feel strongly about removing one's hat indoors or during ceremonial functions (like reciting the Pledge of Allegiance in America).

How do you guys feel about the practice? What do you know of its origins? The most I can seem to find is that it is rooted in a practice begun by medieval European knights.

Some of you may respond with the same thing I've been hearing for years: "It's a sign of respect." If that's your answer, please don't stop there. This is what I am questioning. Why, exactly, is it considered a sign of respect? In what way does the removal of my hat indicate respect? In what way does the neglect of the custom indicate disrespect? I understand it may have had its roots in a time when it could genuinely have indicated respect. But today? I don't buy it.

He's not the Messiah. He's a very naughty boy! -Brian's mum
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04-12-2013, 05:29 PM (This post was last modified: 04-12-2013 05:37 PM by ELK12695.)
RE: Hats Off?
(04-12-2013 05:18 PM)Cardinal Smurf Wrote:  For some reason, even though I've not had to deal with this in many years (I think) it still bothers me that some people still feel strongly about removing one's hat indoors or during ceremonial functions (like reciting the Pledge of Allegiance in America).

How do you guys feel about the practice? What do you know of its origins? The most I can seem to find is that it is rooted in a practice begun by medieval European knights.

Some of you may respond with the same thing I've been hearing for years: "It's a sign of respect." If that's your answer, please don't stop there. This is what I am questioning. Why, exactly, is it considered a sign of respect? In what way does the removal of my hat indicate respect? In what way does the neglect of the custom indicate disrespect? I understand it may have had its roots in a time when it could genuinely have indicated respect. But today? I don't buy it.

I reckon it has something to with that say a hat or a cap somehow conceals who you are, and that taking it off shows your true identity; meaning that you're more honest that way. Now I guess you could apply that to the rest of any clothes on the human body, but I'm pretty sure most people would prefer to leave their shirt and pants on. Also, say that a police officer
takes her/his hat off when s/he's gonna tell some bad news to a victim, it means that the focus is meant to be solely on the facial expression and not what's above it.

Or, you can take the advice of my old teachers who lost their shit because someone wouldn't take their wintercaps in class; claiming it wasn't cold inside.

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04-12-2013, 05:36 PM
RE: Hats Off?
Hats are meant for outsideTongue
You could also argue that hats can be distracting and obscure other peoples view. Hats off is an idiom to express admiration. You also mentioned that it started in medieval times right? This is more likely the origin of the salute so knights would often have their visors down to protect their face and raising the visor would be allow others to see your face. I think it it could be a symbol of respect, no obstructions, no hindrances in seeing who someone is.

"I don't have to have faith, I have experience." Joseph Campbell
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04-12-2013, 05:37 PM
RE: Hats Off?
It's like saying please and thank you.
Please and thank you are pretty pointless, but some of us do it because it's a way to show gratitude for someone else's effort.
It's a small thing but it makes a difference.
ie: "give me a pack of smokes"
sounds demanding and like you're treating that person like some sort of slave.
ie2: "give me a pack of smokes, please"
is more friendly.

The hat thing is like please and thank you. Yea it's pretty pointless but it's just a small action that has this meaning associated with it.
It's a small action you can do to show that you have respect for whatever.

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04-12-2013, 05:40 PM
RE: Hats Off?
(04-12-2013 05:29 PM)ELK12695 Wrote:  
(04-12-2013 05:18 PM)Cardinal Smurf Wrote:  For some reason, even though I've not had to deal with this in many years (I think) it still bothers me that some people still feel strongly about removing one's hat indoors or during ceremonial functions (like reciting the Pledge of Allegiance in America).

How do you guys feel about the practice? What do you know of its origins? The most I can seem to find is that it is rooted in a practice begun by medieval European knights.

Some of you may respond with the same thing I've been hearing for years: "It's a sign of respect." If that's your answer, please don't stop there. This is what I am questioning. Why, exactly, is it considered a sign of respect? In what way does the removal of my hat indicate respect? In what way does the neglect of the custom indicate disrespect? I understand it may have had its roots in a time when it could genuinely have indicated respect. But today? I don't buy it.

I reckon it has something to with that say a hat or a cap somehow conceals who you are, and that taking it off shows your true identity; meaning that you're more honest that way. Now I guess you could apply that to the rest of any clothes on the human body, but I'm pretty sure most people would prefer to leave their shirt and pants on. Also, say that a police officer
takes her/his hat off when s/he's gonna tell some bad news to a victim, it means that the focus is meant to be souely on the facial expression and now what's above it.

Or, you can take the advice of my old teachers who lost their shit because someone wouldn't take their wintercaps in class; claiming it wasn't cold inside.
an interesting point, hats are very powerful symbols. Many officials wear hats and when you take your hat off you're not a officer, you're not a soldier, you're a persons, human and to remove a symbol of authority such as a hat really says something. To connect with other folks.

"I don't have to have faith, I have experience." Joseph Campbell
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04-12-2013, 05:40 PM
RE: Hats Off?
OK, I can see where this is going.

But, is it polite when I go inside and remove my hat....only to reveal hat hair? Who wants to see that?

He's not the Messiah. He's a very naughty boy! -Brian's mum
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04-12-2013, 05:48 PM
RE: Hats Off?
Removing a hat seemed to be such an instant reaction to entering a building. I remember my grandfather always wearing a hat outside but never when he stepped foot in a house or store or (heaven forbid) church without removing his hat. The military teaches even women to remove their headgear when entering a building.

By the time my son was in middle school he and his friends pretty much only took their ball caps off to take a shower.

Guess it's a change in gestures of respect that came over a couple generations.

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04-12-2013, 06:17 PM
RE: Hats Off?
Two guys are fishing a lake next to a road when a funeral procession starts to trundle over the hill and come towards them.

One fisherman takes his hat off as they drive slowly past and when they are gone he puts his hat back on.

The other fisherman says "Wow, that was a nice gesture I didn't think you had it in you"

"Yup, least I could do, I was married to her for 45 years" said the other fisherman.

For no matter how much I use these symbols, to describe symptoms of my existence.
You are your own emphasis.
So I say nothing.

-Bemore.
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