Linda Soller | Nov 09, 2020
I’m intentionally writing this prior to the end of our Presidential election. As I contemplate civility, I am struck by the fact that it’s not about who wins or loses, it’s about being civil all the time. Robert Fulghum, author, and minister, dealt with civility in his 1986 book, All I Really Need to Know I Learned in Kindergarten. He provided a list of things we learn in kindergarten like manners matter, use your words (not your fist or feet), share, clean up your own mess, and the one we still hear today, be kind. These rules should not be new to anyone who is reading this blog. You are not born knowing how to be civil, you are taught it, and in our world today it appears we could all use a lesson in civility.
Watching videos is not really my thing, but if you haven’t seen Kid President (a.k.a. Robby Novak) you should check him out. There is one video where he lists the 20 things we should say more often. Can you guess what they might be? Here are a few: thank you, excuse me, I’m sorry, I forgive you, and please. Oh, don’t let me forget, nothing. Yes, sometimes we need to keep quiet. I have always heard if you can’t say something nice don’t say anything at all, but Kid President suggests if you can’t say something nice, you’re not trying hard enough. Civility is active and practiced. Another item on his list which strikes a chord with me right now is “we disagree, but I still like you as a person.” Disagreement does not justify being mean. This little guy can make you think.
So, what does it all come down to? Treat others as you would like to be treated. Sound familiar? I think we can be better than we are now. I think we have a country and a democracy worth protecting and supporting. Based on voter turnout, I know I am not alone. I think we can look around us and be proud of how far we have come, and hopeful of how far we are capable to going. Let me leave you with a quote from Robert Fulghum’s book. “It doesn’t matter what you say you believe – it only matters what you do.”
Be kind – Be civil! :o) Linda