How Civility Can Return to the Political Debate

As you might expect, the current debate over civility, at times, has become not very civil.

Civility is all about how we speak to and treat the people with whom we disagree and civility is all about what we say about the people with whom we disagree.

Synonyms for civility include such words as courteous, polite and respectful.

And in today’s super charged and divisive political atmosphere, it seems for many, civility has become a forgotten word and a forgotten behavior.

There is plenty of blame to go around. 

A president who uses harsh words to describe those who criticize him and who uses Twitter in a whole new way than past presidents have used the so-called bully pulpit.

And many of those who oppose him also use very harsh words to describe him.  The tone of the debate over politics has probably never been nastier.

On social media and at workplaces and homes, there are plenty of discussions or maybe the better word is confrontations, between people who disagree….that are anything but civil.

So maybe it’s a good time note what a commentator in the America Jesuit Review wrote the other day about civility.

David Zubik wrote this:

Civility assumes that the ties that bind us are far more important than the differences we have on important social and political issues.  Civility requires a “civil tongue.” When we direct insults toward another human being, we degrade ourselves even more than we degrade that person.” 

Wise words for everyone.   Read all of them here

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