A Glimpse Of Stocking
Tracing the history of manners is a funny joke. Perhaps the best guide is 'The Civilizing Process' by Norbert Elias. In Canada the two volume work addressed the history of manners and power and civility. Manners are a convention. They amount to a handshake.
The nobility in ignorance tied opulence to grace and the servant and working classes practised monkey see, monkey do. Grace stemmed from the gods in the form of power and wealth. 'Dieu et mon Droit' set the standards of the day and in an way still do today. The waltz was once a counter culture dance to be seen only in out of the way, unlit places, now is the signature form of politesse. Lords and Ladies were house broken and stopped taking a dump on the living room carpet, and, instead, politely squatted deep over the cold ashes of the hearth. Power brokers have used social convention in the form of civility as a means to shame the uninitiated. The gig is up. It's time to stop those who don't get the joke that they'll never dance la minuet in the hall of the Sun King. At Waterloo Napoleon (perhaps apocryphal) said of his opposition, "they have finally stopped dancing la mineut", by which he meant the opposing forces no longer marched obligingly forward in lock step to be slaughtered by his grape shot. Civility in society serves as well in today's world as would the polite rules of engagement from a post renaissance field of battle in Iraq. (Oddly this has some truth to it as we fight terrorists as if they were signatories to the Hague Conventions, we engage the enemy but wage war as if with ourselves).
Society, such as it is, sets standards, but such standards, barring hate crimes, needn't be set by fiat. The various social tribes can set and enforce their own standards and do. A warning in the preamble of a public broadcast is enough. Major streets in most, if not all, western cities have stores selling sex toys and pornography. Children pass such stores every day, but don't gawk because it's all but meaningless to them. Puberty hits and they seek such places out.