Don’t forget kindergarten lessons of respect, fair play |

Don’t forget kindergarten lessons of respect, fair play

Don Chin

Dear Editor,

Recent letters to the editor have described hordes of “whiny liberals” and “hypocritical Republicans” in our midst. I would like to share some thoughts.

While primarily a liberal and a Democrat, I don’t believe I am so predictably whiny.

While many conservatives are Republicans, they don’t appear hypocritical to me.

Many Americans believe that honorable Republicans and Democrats make up the vast majority in these parties. There are scores of capable thinking conservatives and liberals. Most understand that each of us can, at times, be both liberal and conservative. Most Americans agree to disagree in a respectful manner.

This ebb and flow between liberalism, conservatism, Republicans and Democrats is to be appreciated, nourished and encouraged, for our constitutionally-based democratic republic was born out of this tension. Dealing with this ebb and flow in a positive way was and is crucial.

Most of us grew up learning that sometimes you win some and sometimes you lose some. Isn’t this what we teach our children? An infantile brand of liberalism or conservatism must win all the time and at any cost. It does not win or lose gracefully. Reverting to “terrible two,” infantile dogma throws tantrums and relies on clever manipulation. An adult version is exhibited through slick half-truths, shabby stereotypes, sophisticated smear jobs and a lot of shouting. All of us, be we Republicans, liberals, conservative, Democrats and everything in between, need to exercise what should have been learned in kindergarten: respect, fair play, sharing and clean hands will go a long way in helping us work for the common good.

At times we will think of our fellow citizens as hypocrites, whiners, and even stupid or dangerous. Being human, it’s OK, as long as we guard against habitual behavior, lest we become slick and sophisticated professionals at the art of being disrespectful.

Remember, we are mostly OK as long as we “git sum.” Thank you for your kind attention.

Don Chin

Glenwood Springs

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