At the Des Moines Register, John Oler writes about the importance of civility, that vanishing aspect of American life, and offers an example especially fitting for Father’s Day, and worth quoting in its entirety:

There has been a lot of talk about being civil in our political discourse. I was thinking about something my dad said to me years ago. I recall President Richard Nixon was coming to town. Nixon was a man who was loved or hated.

Dad said to me, “I wish I could go downtown and see the president.” He was a life-long Democrat, and not much of a Nixon fan. I asked him why? He told me, “He is the president. One of only 37. Regardless of our views, he is still our president. I would like to shake his hand.”

It is difficult to put civility into practice in these days of sensationally vitriolic political speak. We should all be respectful of our president and our government. Never forget to voice your dissent, but by the same token, never forget to voice your support.

As for Nixon, I cheered when he resigned. I find myself a bit ashamed of that today. Sure I disagreed with him, but I find I agree with some of his ideas and policy more than I realized at the time.

As time goes by, I find I disagree more with the policy of those I supported than I realized.

Photo: President Nixon talks with a young basefall fan at the Washington Senators’ Opening Day game versus the New York Yankees at RFK Stadium.