Column 1: Civility

Martinez News-Gazette Columnist

CIVILITY, a key to the image and reputation of our great nation since the earliest of times, has sunk to the lowest level ever under the ‘guidance’ of the least civil leadership and administration ever. The leading historians of our time tell us with no restraints that we’ve hit the new low. And, perhaps, we are not surprised? Did we not see what the least civil presidential candidate in 2016 behaved like at every public appearance during the campaign? Unbelievably gross!! So, what we saw was what we got. The old saying, “buyer beware” is a warning.

Now the level has worked its way into the White House staff which has caused real indignation and disgust over the latest incident, the comment about Senator John McCain and his possible passing in the days to come. John McCain, the World War II Pacific theater Naval Aviator, returned after several years of torture as a Vietnamese captive, to serve his country in the U. S. Senate for more than three decades and is now slowly losing his life to an insidious cancer. In an era of disrespect for so many things good and positive, his service and reputation are denigrated by members of our current national leadership who are not qualified or worthy to do so. Nor, could they ever walk in his foot steps for a moment. Such shame!!

As if the comment made by an ‘aide’ in the White House was not sufficiently disgusting, the lack of a national apology makes it worse. The irony of this disgusting incident is that the uproar was not the fact that the comment was made at the White House level, but that someone in the White House Press Room leaked the comment to the media. No regrets publicly to the McCain family, just fuming over the leak. How very sad; but what can we expect in a house of horrors ruled over by an ogre with no real sense of class or decency?

DISASTER in the Middle East as the grand opening of the new U.S. Embassy in Jerusalem took place this week. The celebration had two parts…the dedication with all the pomp and circumstance, flags and banners and speeches, and the unscripted part which killed many and injured hundreds more a few miles away as Palestinians protested the move. Gun fire, rock throwing. Fires and large protest groups, thanks to a decision made in opposition to more deliberate and thoughtfulness from here and friends overseas, all of whom knew what would happen.

Where will the next Middle East conflict break out? From those experts who study such situations, and the history of the areas, it is not if, but when such a conflict will take place. Why do “WE” allow our nation to slide into such situations? Why do the members of Congress not step forward and say NO to a leader who has no knowledge of history, nor does he care. You know, the Provocateur-in-Chief who is too busy to hear vital intelligence briefings, and is managing to alienate many of our major allies with flabbergasting moves, many seemingly on impulse. You know, the thoughtless kneejerk decisions which have bad ramifications.

Now, next big chance to show some statesmanship will be in Singapore (if it happens!!) when he meets ‘Little Rocket Man’ face-to-face. Will his arrogance and ego allow him to be truly a good negotiator, or will he not be able to handle dealing with the situation? Will one-ups-man-ship enter the meeting? Will the ridiculous notion of his being considered as a Nobel Peace Prize recipient drive his ‘dealing’ with a serious situation which the whole world is watching and hoping for a successful solution. Or, will his ego cause him to walk out of the Singapore meeting to show superiority? Let us all hope for the best. The world is watching and hopeful. Latest odds seem to be on the meeting not happening due to the demands of the U. S. which are not acceptable to the North Koreans. We still can hope all goes well!

MAIN STREET MARTINEZ has a great list of activities coming in the near future, not the least of which is July 4th with many activities to help celebrate. The second Sunday of each month will be an Open Air Market on Main Street June to October. Want something fresh and mingle with friends? Give it a try. Make it a Sunday activity.

ABSENTEE BALLOTS have, or are, arriving in the mail. A chance to cast your ballot without leaving home. A chance to make your voice heard in making our nation a place to believe in and support. Listen to the candidates who have thrown their hats in the electoral process, and make a decision. Same with the various measures. The future of our Bay Area and of Martinez will be affected by your vote. Be serious!

FLASHBACK experience recently brought a reminder that friends and great business attitude mean so much. This is back to 1953.

One Sunday evening as I was returning to college in Stockton, I blew a trailer tire on Marsh Creek Road, well east of Clayton. Went to a nearby farm house, called my Dad, etc. Dad called Kermit Coon, owner of the C & R Tire Shop on Alhambra Avenue, a regular tire supplier for our family. After hearing my plight, Kermit, the owner and fellow Rotarian of Dad’s, said, “Tell Bill to hang in there. I will go by the shop and get a tire to take out there.” An hour or so later Kermit ared with a tire, changed it and both of us went on our way.

Do we still have business people who would do that kind of special favor for someone? On a Sunday evening? Many miles? Perhaps.

GREAT COMMERCIAL by All State insurance on TV which some of us parents have experienced. Young son comes into the parents’ bedroom to explain a ‘minor fender bender’ he has had with the family car. Wonderful explanation of the incident and how smart the parents were in buying the insurance they purchased…..etc. “Four weeks without driving the car,” is handed down by mother. Immediate acceptance by the son who knows his case is lost. End of discussion. No rebuttal by the perpetrator. End of commercial.

WARRIORS working their way toward another championship? Could be. Each game is exciting. So many stars to hold our attention.

CHEERS for Prince Harry and his lovely bride, Meghan, as they were married yesterday in a chapel in Windsor Castle. A handsome smiling couple. They can enjoy married life without having to ‘behave’ like a future king with every moment being covered by the media. Well, not every moment! We wish them happiness and long lives.

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