Common courtesy…

…is dying in a country that is divided by partisan lunacy. I’ve said many times that I do not think I’ll see legitimate consensus in Congress in my lifetime and every day the Party of “NO” proves me right.  Congress was built on compromise and this one is at a nadir because they’ve all forgotten that.

I miss living on a military base. Family moves in next door…hey! new friends! Civilian world? Not the same. People don’t talk to each other. It’s quite sad. Now lest I’m misunderstood, we have wonderful neighbors immediately around us, because we talk. Well, someone outside the ring doesn’t…

My first encounter with citizen complaints was shortly after I started working for a municipality. At a staff meeting, I heard that a citizen had called to complain that she couldn’t turn into her driveway because a contractor who was rebuilding the road in front of her house took too long to move a dump truck out of the way.

I was stunned. That never would have occurred to me. Call the City Engineer? What the hell is wrong with these people? I thought it even more odd that it didn’t phase the staff who took the call.

That people make these calls struck home when someone called The City on us. After we converted our pool to a pond, we got a visit from Code Enforcement on a mosquito complaint. Of course, the concern was baseless, and the gentleman thought that what we were doing was awesome.

Fast forward to July 4th of this year: “Dad! there’s a cop walking on the side of the house!”

He was nice enough … said there was a noise complaint and asked me to turn the music down. He didn’t give me the impression that he thought it was a big deal, but…

…I turned it down.

What the hell is wrong with people that they don’t talk to each other? The toxicity of Congress, wrong-wing talk radio, and MocksNews is a reflection of the national condition. Talk radio and the “News” Channel inflame the national condition, and they feed off of each other.

Even worse is the  veneer of separation that social media and email offer that people  hide behind. Don’t see the person? Not a real person. That mindset has crept into real conversations, where politeness is cast aside if you don’t know the person you are talking to. Anonymity on a phone sometimes gives license to say things that might mortify you if you were face to face.

I’m profoundly embarrassed at the state of our Congress and media.

(And also for some sad person in my neighborhood.)


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