Modern Etiquette: Disagreements with grace

Mon Jan 24, 2011 12:43pm EST
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By Mary Mitchell

SEATTLE (Reuters Life!) - "We may not be able to stop all evil in the world, but I know that how we treat one another is entirely up to us," U.S. President Barack Obama said this month in the aftermath of the Arizona shooting which claimed six lives and left 13 others wounded.

His comments are a wake-up call to all of us about the extremes of violent disagreement and how we all must strive to resolve our differences with as much grace as possible.

"The loss of these wonderful people should make every one of us strive to be better in our private be better friends and neighbors, co-workers, and parents," Obama said.

As a student during the Vietnam protests, I remember how vociferous and occasionally violent some of my classmates were in their efforts to promote peace and world harmony.

This puzzled me.

I noted that many of them were unable to get along with their roommates, which made me wonder how they could expect to bring about world peace. Today, we are still faced with war, violence at home and abroad, and incivility.

It is very sad to be an American and watch accounts of fatal shootings or deadly violence and surely the same is true for Egyptians, Tunisians and countless others across the world.

All for what?   Continued...