What would George Washington think if he saw how ugly politics could get today?
He probably wouldn't be very happy according to author and Murfreesboro Post contributor Christian Grantham's new book, George Washington's Rules of Civility and Decent Behavior in Company and Conversation.
The book goes into detail on the 110 rules of respect and consideration that the first president followed when he was a teenager.
Grantham said he was inspired to write the book from the anger he saw coming from the Tea Party movement, along with their historical focus.
"This was kind of a way to show them, you know, the founding fathers were about a lot of things, but they were also about being civil."
Many of Washington's rules aren't directly tied to politics, but Grantham thinks they can still be relevant today.
"What we hope people will do, is read them and ponder a more modern version of a rule," he said. "To dig and find the sentiment of a rule and just be cognizant of that in your actions and words."
The call for civility has been all over the media during the recent contentious midterm election.
Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert just wrapped up their Rally to Restore Sanity in an attempt to bring some sensibility back to politics. Only days later, Keith Olbermann suspended his "Worst Person in the World" segment on MSNBC's "Countdown" and the Today Show recently aired a three-part series titled, "Is Civility Dead?"
Grantham says that civility is declining because channels of communication are narrowing onto specific interests, and fewer people are making an effort to understand different points of view.
"You've got this view that is custom tailored to really tap into and foment a lot of hostility and anger toward the other side," he said. "It's just a matter of perspective. A lot of people don't have that kind of perspective anymore."
In keeping with the book's message of respectful political dialogue, it was actually worked on by three people with very different political beliefs.
Grantham is a Democrat, the book's illustrator, Jeff Moore, is a Libertarian and Glenn Reynolds, who wrote the foreword, is a conservative Tea Party activist and founder of the blog Instapundit.
"We've all three collaborated to put this together, feeling like it was an important message to put out there, because all year long politics has been so acrimonious," Grantham said.
Grantham feels the most important rule Washington followed is rule 110: "Labor to keep alive in your breast that little spark of celestial fire called conscience.
"That really kind of sums up what this book is all about," he said. "It's calling upon people to keep a conscience in your actions and your words. You're doing them and saying them with some empathy for others, and that's one particular rule that stands out."
What would George Washington think if he saw how ugly politics could get today?
I hate being an enemy to some because I have a different opinion on a subject.
Washington, as a youth, came across a century old book with 110 maxims. He copied all for his own use. The maxims covered such behavior as spitting in public, cursing, picking one’s teeth/nose and scratching one’s private parts in mixed company . They also covered interactions with other people, especially those inferior to oneself.
Washington, reared from about 11 years on in a most affluent, well educated, aristocratic society, the upper of the upper class in Virginia, with the only inferiors there being slaves, was nevertheless mindful of those maxims as he moved among those with more wealth and superior intellect.
As an officer, both prior to and during the Revolution, he had ample opportunity to draw from those maxims, and later, particularly so during his presidency.
Grantham makes the excellent point “fewer people are making an effort to understand different points of view” and notes “the anger he saw coming from the Tea Part movement” that prompted the writing.
We saw the most egregious form of that anger in the excellent article from Courier’s Tony Stinett with the covering of local Republican Party organizational meeting wherein Matt Studd’s “celebration of.... abominations” and Davenport’s “murder” and “kill unborn” left little doubt about anger and lack of civility.
I have my beliefs about abortion, but at no time have I ever been angry about it or had a lack of civility toward anyone who disagreed with me in any comment I have made.
As much as you may try, you will never cause me to sink to the level you live in because I don't need to put others down to make my own life seem better like you obviously need to.
That is your creed, not mine. You are the one who chooses to promote hate and anger by calling people names and trying to cause division amongst the people in a place where you do not even live at.
I feel real pity for you at times. I feel real sorrow for you all the time. I find it ironic that a person who claims to know it all has so little of an ability to explain themselves and write a coherent statement in about 3/4's of the comments you write.
I feel even more pain that you obviously have no friends or anyone who will listen to your garbage and it drives you to go to other towns and places just to try to find an outlet.
I am sorry you have no friends and struggle with just being at peace. You must really be miserable and lonely. What a sad world you must live in.
When I showed my support for the Roe v. Wade decision, I was called a murderer.
When I said if one’s faith is so weak it must be supported by church and state, it could not be much of a faith to begin with and someone has failed in their church and home to properly nourish that faith, I was called an atheist (after they learned how to spell it), anti-God, anti-Christ, anti-religion and immoral.
When I noted the hypocrisy of those who denounced the stimulus plan and then fell all over themselves trying to slice and dice it for their district and state, I was someone against the community and an outsider (which I am not), who should keep his mouth shut.
When I said those who had that “urge” to “kick some sense into the opposition” were wrong in expressing that urge in front of impressionable children, my parents were disparaged.
When I listed some atheists who had contributed a great deal to this nation and it was not a degradation for anyone to be one, I was taken to task.
And in a separate paragraph, altogether, when I gave a definition of a bigot, some seem to think it applied to them–how could I prevent that?
My comment that all of us (which included me) have the inalienable right to be stupid, but some have abused that privilege, seemed to offend at least one reader. Could I have been wrong?
And when I quoted some of the actual words of Mr. Davenport from his “Murder is OK, if it is called a choice....and we turn around and kill and unborn child” (which seemed to be an attempt to label all who favor Roe v. Wade as murderers also) and also noted this seemed to be a perfect example of the loss of civility the writer of the book was referring to, Mr. Davenport took umbrage.
Why? I have no idea.
You really don't have any idea of what the majority of Americans are trying to say. I can also see by your comments that most of the time you have a hard time understanding what you are trying to say as well.
You say that I "attempt to label all who favor Roe vs. Wade as murders" and that is not even close to what I said or implied. You are simply trying to argue, not debate.
I was never hateful, arrogant, or obtuse with any of the statements I have made unlike yourself who continues on every article to try and demean those who fail to see life through a liberal telescope like yourself.
You like to throw down the guantlet that people on this site are rude and disrespectful to you because they don't believe what you believe and it is simply not true. You create the controversy simply because you have no other life to live. That is very pitiful.
I can tell you how you can fix it. Quit reading it. If you don't like it, pick up the DNJ in your own home town and read that.
I am quite sure Woodbury will survive without your opinions, arrogance, troublemaking and name calling.
Parse those words all you want, Mr. Davenport. but the implication is the same, no matter how you want to phrase--you were saying:
"It is murder if you have an abortion. Those who do so are murderers and those who aid and abett are equally as guilty and murderers are put behind bars".
The venue for this display of “civility” by Mr. Davenport? None other than a meeting where even the reporter labeled “seemingly one of good vs evil.”
A meeting where is was said that Democrats are “in a full rebellion against God Almighty”...
“They are thumbing their nose and pointing their fist and celebrating everything He calls an abomination...that live in rebellion to God and pass legislation that is in rebellion to God”...
”Our Christian heritage is being stomped on.”
All this, Mr. Davenport, is nothing more or nothing less than bigotry, dressed up in all its finery and paraded around the square in downtown Woodbury by the Republican Party’s two spokesmen Mr. Studds and Mr. Davenport.
"Grantham says that civility is declining because channels of communication are narrowing onto specific interests, and fewer people are making an effort to understand different points of view."
Nothing was said, at anytime, in any meeting by the Republican Party that I attended that even closely resembles what you are lying about.
I am also unclear how you presume to know anything about any meeting considering you have never been and wouldn't attend anyway.
Matthew Studd wrote his letter to the Editor of the Courier and did not at anytime write on behalf of the Republican Party of Cannon County nor did he say anything in any meeting as you suggest. You obviously can't read who the party officers were.
As far as I am concerned on the issue of abortion, I am 100% against it. I don't deny that and I am not sorry for that.
I am sorry you have such a hard time accepting the moral issues that Roe vs. Wade creates.
I am sorry you have such a hard time seeing that there is a problem with a law that allows a woman to decide that they have the right to abort a life that has no one to defend it.
I always find it ironic that all the people in the world who are pro abortion had parents that chose life.
Wouldn't it be much easier had all of those parents just simply aborted those children? Then we wouldn't be having a debate about it today would we?
I have read enough of your comments to understand what type of person you are. I do feel real pity for you. You have become the epitome of liberal America.
You have no morals, you are an aethist, you believe everyone is entitled to all government handouts and you think that government should dictate what we all think, see, hear, feel, eat, and do. The you freely admit that you protested against that same government in the 1960's you so dearly want controlling your life today.
I have no problems with being a conservative. I am quite proud of it. Nothing you can say will ever change it, demean it, controll it, or bring me down in any way.
You are too simple to challenge and too simple to refute. So roll on with your non-sense because as I have said before, you really don't matter to me in the least.
Mr Stinnett quoted from the speakers, one a Matt Studd, a Republican commissioner and one Corey Davenport, elected secretaty Republican Party.
Mr Stinnett did not quote anything from a letter to the editor
Appear in Writing or in Judging ill,
But, of the two, less dang'rous is th' Offence,
To tire our Patience, than mis-lead our Sense"
"Some few in that, but Numbers err in this,
Ten Censure wrong for one who Writes amiss;
A Fool might once himself alone expose,
Now One in Verse makes many more in Prose."
And ten low words oft creep in one dull line:
While they ring round the same unvaried chimes,
With sure returns of still expected rhymes;
Wher'er you find "the cooling western breeze",
In the next line, it "whispers through the trees";
If crystal streams "with pleasing murmurs creep",
The reader's threatened (not in vain) with "sleep"
An Essay on Criticism
Part II of An Essay on Criticism includes a famous couplet:
A little learning is a dangerous thing;
Drink deep, or taste not the Pierian spring.
Blue, my thanks again for a reminder of forgotten words tucked back in the memories of days long gone by. I needed some help to recall all.
One could employ a version of revisionist history---I was not there, the organization meeting never occurred so how could I have said anything or been elected to anything.
Or selective recall–Yes, I attended that meeting and I was elected secretary but I never, never made such ridiculous comments, those are beneath my dignity! I have been misquoted!
Of course, One could just come out and admit all but...
Reminds me of that saying about the web one weaves, when first they learn to deceive.
Now if, someone feels they are catching hell, I am reminded of what President Truman said about telling the truth and they’ll think its hell.
And again, if one can not stand the heat, one should get out of the kitchen.
And I think Rachel you have been asked the same question before about being the same person as dailyreader. You both sound eerily similar.
Rachel , what you think of my writing skills doesn't bother me either. I find it kind of funny considering I have read most of what you have attempted to write over the last few months and saw where you and dailyreader both start in mid sentence when you try to comment.
I am cool with all of you. And for the record, I have never disallowed anyone's statement because they were not from Cannon County.
I do agree with a lot of people who simply wish comments about how our government is run in Cannon County that directly affects people in Cannon County carries more weight when you actually live here and pay taxes here.
I am through with all of your comments after this point because you are all getting really old with your sarcastic comments, name calling and general overkill.
If you actually read these comments from beginning to end, you would find I never mentioned dailyreader until he attempted to accuse me of calling everyone a murderer when it wasn't the truth.
Ya'll can beat this dead horse all you want because I none of you really matter to me at all.
With the deepest of love and respect I am your humble and faithful servant!
Sounds like such an application could be good advice even today.
What was it that was said about the Puritans--something about they wanted everyone else to be as miserable in their religion as what they were in their own--one of the reasons Quakers were executed if they came into their area. Of course they don't do that in Woodbury or do they, Mr Davenport?
When someone sets themselves up as a judge of other people's morals, particularly when they do not know anything personal about the other person, it leaves little doubt as to the character of the judger.
doolittlerd77/corey, it's really spelled atheist not aethist--I know life long habits are hard to break, but do try next time.
You all three need to put up or shut-up!
Every article I see you people commenting on you are constantly putting down other people just because they don't agree with you.
I know Corey Davenport (not the gas station Corey) and he helped my family, specifically my grandmother, when we were in a tough spot financially and he never said a word to anyone about it.
All three of you have no idea how much that helped us and what that meant to my family when we needed it the most. My husband and I had both been laid off and the money he helped provide helped my grandmother get food when we couldn't help as much.
I know he has done a lot for this community and I doubt very seriously any of you have done anything except complain, gripe, moan and groan about everyone else while you sit on your big butt's doing nothin.
I am a Democrat and proud of it, but I agree with a lot of his opinions about people who do nothing but complain and don't help folks out when they need it. dailyreader is a prime example of that! rachel you aren't far behind.
dailyreader I think you are an idiot and arrogant with your stupid quotes and nonsense about nothing no one cares about but you. You worry more about eveyone's spelling than what real people care about or need.
Why don't you three go live on a farm together and grow nuts because that is what you all are.
The Three Stooges: dailyreader, rachel and hendlenut.
If you can't put up and start helping people then in my opinion you need to shut up!
I don't need you to defend me and I bet dailyreader (unless that is really you) asked you to defend him. If he is a man, he can defend himself.
No one appointed you defender of all the people who write comments. And instead of defending or trashing people, why don't you try volunteering at the nursing home, coach a ball team, volunteer at the Sr. Citizen's home instead of trolling this site defending an idiot like dailyreader whose only goal seems to be stirring up trouble?
And it seems like to me you are saying the same thing as Corey did when you wrote "don't waste much of your time worrying about me, I am doing fine and will survive".
Seems like to me you need to follow your own advice and worry about your own self and leave everyone else to worry about themselves.
Like I said before shut up or put up.
Yes, christy I am an idiot. I also take great delight in commenting on the bigotry and hypocrisy of some, more so if they claim to be Christians.
Arrogant--oh, yes, I have a tendency to not suffer fools lightly.
And if I am going to be called a name (delivered as a slur but not really one) I would like to see that appellation correctly spelled.
Such pronouncements as “We have criminals behind bars for killing people...and we turn around and kill an unborn child.” and Democrats are “in a full rebellion against God Almighty”...“They are thumbing their nose and pointing their fist and celebrating everything He calls an abomination...that live in rebellion to God and pass legislation that is in rebellion to God”.."Our Christian heritage is being stomped on.” are particularly useful in showing all the love and kindness in the hearts of some Republicans.
Admittedly, I am pompous on occasions, a weakness, long suffered by those around me. If christy won't get too upset with another stupid quote, I will pass along what Jefferson said about Adams--something like --absolutely brillant at times but at times, totally insane.
christy, you may call me Curly or even Shemp and even an idiot or an arrogant fool if it makes you feel better, I don't want you upset before the holiday.
Keep on trashing and bashing because that is all you know to do.
From what I have read most of you couldn't spell politics let alone actually have a conversation about them with anyone to include the "gas station corey". I doubt you even know how to pump gas.
And the only people I see that are angry and frustrated are you four bozo's who can't seem to understand it is you that are calling people names, you who are using sarcasm to try and put people down because they don't believe what you think is right.
Rachel you called people a "fool" in one of your other comments in a different article, so don't lie about it now.
I am a Democrat and I don't agree with everone on this site to include Corey, but you four (dailyreader, rachel henson and now bolo) live on this site with no intent on doing nothing but badmouthing people.
When is the last time any of you have done anything but complain? I doubt you have one example of how you have helped Woodbury in any way. So shut up or put up.
And I know dailyreader is your King and idol bolo, but you need to get you a dictionary like he has because a "comet" flies in outterspace like you and the other dailyites do.
You might want to learn how to spell "comment" correctly or dailyreader might throw you out of the club.
Afterall, he is the spelling bee champion of the world.
Christy-how in heaven's name can you assume (and how do you know it's big?) It is absurd to extrapolate anything like that from what has been said here.
Corey, Come back, we miss you! As far as the "murderer" name calling issue; I am a Democrat and a Christian also and while I do not believe abortion is the right thing to do personally, I believe it is Biblical to follow the ruling of the Supreme Court of our land.
To say that daily reader is an "idiot" and/or a "two year old" is ridiculous. He is obviously one of the more intelligent and educated posters on the site. I have no problem following his flow of ideas. In addition, he spells better than most of our citizenry! I am so glad to see that someone cares about this. Ever since I heard a county commissioner bemoan the education system in Cannon County because so many of
our high school graduates have to take "medieval" classes in college
(he meant "remedial" I assume) I have been astounded at the lack of knowledge of proper English usage.
Doolittle you have anger issues. Get help!
Rachel, keep up the good work. Great to see another lady with a mind.
delbert, you are a man of few words, but I like what you say!
Keep it coming!
I too have read all of these and I thought I would weigh in as well since it seems to be all the rage.
From what I see and what I have read, with the exception of Corey, I think you all have anger issues and way too much time on your hands. Corey is the only one who has actually said he was through and done with all of this and actually kept his word. None of you can seem to let it go. And what's worse is it isn't even about the topic of the article.
I want to address each of you so there is no confusion as to who I am talking about. And I will start with your ringleader.
dailyreader: I agree with a lot of the people on this site and thru out the county who read these comments. You are very had to follow in your comments and the majority of the time it is like a High School student who is assigned to write a 1000 word essay and writes as many words as possible and tries to find the most important words they can look up in the dictionary and in the end the paper resembles a goulash that makes no sense at all but has the required 1000 words.
From what I have read you could say a lot more with a lot less. And I am not really sure what you have to be arrogant about because so far you just look like a donkey's behind to me. To me you sound like a bitter old man who has nothing more to do than to stir up trouble because he has no other life to live.
rachel: I just got to ask if you and dailyreader aren't the same person did you two meet on eharmony.com or singlesnet.com because your infatuation with him is slowly turning into love right before our very eyes. I mean seriously, it is borderline worship and that is the biggest comical thing I see anywhere. Your desire to defend him against all of the injustice you see seems really like you are kind of desperate for his attention and it is really kind of scary in a stalking kind of way. But, I guess that is who you are. Also, I really do think you two are the same person because your writing style is extremely similar in that you just kind of begin wherever you feel like. But, maybe that is the stalking thing again and you need to write like him too. Who knows?
doolittle: You are overzealous at times with your comments, but from what I see you are pretty close to what is real. Like dailyreader, you could try and tone it down a bit and say more. Although that is hard I know with him feeling the need to explain every single liberal ideology despite the fact no one understands him or even cares what he has to say.
tinydancer: You say you are a Christian but you say " I believe it is Biblical to follow the ruling of the Supreme Court of our land". Let me explain one thing you to you that everyone always seems to forget. God's Law supercedes man's law in every case. So just because our government says it is ok to kill an unborn child does not make it right. And if you disagree with abortion and you vote for people who promote it and encourage it, you are no different than the person who rides shotgun in the car during a bank robbery. You both are guilty and both will pay the consequences.
You don't know me personally, but I do know you. I have seen what you have done at different times when you are out in the community and I have been impressed. I have seen the time you have spent with the children of our community and how they responded to you and it was always a positive thing. I also know your desire to make Woodbury a better place to live. And from what I know and what I have witnessed you are a stand up man. I know your father and he is as nice of a man as anyone in this county. You keep up the good work you are doing and don't let any of these pessimistic, know-it-all, complainers get you down.
I know it has been asked before, but I will ask it again. dailyreader, rachel, tinydancer, bolo, hensondelbert what have any of you done for Cannon County.
i think christyj22 said it best when she said: "you all need to put up or shut up"!
P.S. Add me to your list of people you hate, call names and try to bring down with all of your ignorance and intolerance.
In other words "put up or shut up".
Sorry that was so hard for you to figure out.
And tinydancer I too have seen your comments on other articles as well, so this could not have been your first post.
Wow hensondelbert, what fourth grader did you call to get that stupid comeback?
Why didn't you just tell Josh that your daddy could beat up his daddy? Then you both could invent imaginary brothers and have them beat each other up too.
Repeat after me hensondelbert: I will not call the grammar school to get stupid comebacks from the 4th grade anymore!
And p.s. you forgot the "will" in between your sentence, so don't ever chastise anyone for misspelling or grammar until you learn how to "spoke englush" correctly!
SARCASM in case you didn't get it.
I'm not sure why it even matters to you and Josh whether I have posted prior to Nov. 20th or not, but you guys are both WRONG on that matter. I repeat, I did not even obtain a login until that day. I did post on 3 articles on Nov 20th, but that was the first day I have EVER commented on this website. THE END FINAL ANSWER ON THAT ISSUE
Also, you have absolutely no idea what other people who are giving opinions on this site either do or do not do for others or the community. How do you think you could know that by reading these posts? Again, that is ABSURD reasoning.
Besides that, you are really annoying and you don't even address the topic of the article.
But it's kind of fun to spar with you. Hope everyone has a Happy and safe Thanksgiving.
seems like i heard of a feller who had a youngun that wanted to do the same, and that youngun got set up with food stamps and gov't housing and even insurance. real cheap rent too. less than $40 a month for a right nice place. about the same size as what me and ileen had when we was first married.
i was just wondering though if every youngun signed up for help like that youngun did, why there might not be any money to go around for those folks who really needed it. real poor folks should just quit complaining since the gov't can't help everyone get ahead in life.
Do you recall Mr amd Mrs Lehman who ran a sort of private school? And a favorite, Mrs Northcutt.