As I approached the door I instinctively opened it and allowed the woman behind me to go first. I was met with a death stare and admonished for implying she was too weak to hold her own door. This was my freshman year in college back in 1981.
My intent was to be a gentleman but she perceived me as an oppressive male chauvinist pig. It’s a naïve thought but for the better part of my life I have believed if you do the right things the right things will happen. But as the years have passed, people being ungracious is becoming the rule and not the exception.
Tom Brady stomped off the field like a little brat without congratulating Nick Foles after the Super Bowl. There is no excuse for being a poor sport and his decided lack of character says more about him than his football talent.
The hosts of a The View recently mocked Vice President Mike Pence for his religious views. It appears tolerance to them means everyone must adopt their view. The arrogance and hubris of the hosts is lost on them because, like most of the media elite, self-awareness is not their strong suit.
Andrew Pollack lost his daughter in the Marjory Stoneham Douglas High School massacre. Before he learned her fate he was photographed frantically looking for his daughter. If ever a time called for compassion and empathy this was it. Yet he was mercilessly mocked on Twitter because he was wearing a Trump T-shirt.
Some people suggested he was to blame because his vote for Trump paved the way for gun nuts to shoot up schools. That’s sick logic. Yet, these same people lecture the rest of us to be compassionate and understanding for everyone except Trump supporters.
Just last week, Lauren Duca, a columnist for Teen Vogue, made vile comments about the Rev. Billy Graham after news of his death was reported. She called him “evil” and compared him to a piece of fecal matter apparently oblivious to how those two comparisons reflect more on her than him.
Her behavior epitomizes the dangerous path we are treading. She is so consumed by her own agenda, her own worldview that she lost sight of common decency. What kind of person can act so despicable in one of the worst moments in a family’s life?
It’s hard to know how this lack of decency became so prevalent in our society. Back in 1981 it was harmless rudeness from a woman more focused on making a point than accepting a kindness. Today, it’s an all-out war between people, races, political parties, nations, religions, and classes.
It seems people are no longer able to have a civil discourse on any topic. If your opinion is different than the mainstream you are branded a racist, bigot, xenophobe, homophobe, or any whatever-phobe. The vitriol has reached a fever pitch.
Those intolerant of another opinion do not care about doing the right thing. They only care about doing the right thing for themselves and therein lies the problem. It boils down to people only caring about themselves and not the greater good.
History is rife with examples of what happens when a population becomes decadent. Unfortunately, history tends to repeat itself because people never learn. Or can they? At some point we will become intolerant of intolerance. When that happens depends on us.