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As I write this, our nation is very polarized.  It isn't just politically, it is going to the very core of what defines a nation.  It covers the spectrum of ideology regarding nearly everything.  No matter where you look, there is separation. We seem to have fallen into the mindset that "I am right, and if you don't agree with me you are not only wrong, you are stupid!"  Blame and name calling have become the way to address differences.  How long can any nation hold together when it is being torn asunder from within.  What has happened to the concept of compromise?  What has happened to the concept of compassion, humility, patience, and gratitude?  

A friend of mine once asked a gathering of executives, who was most important person in the company.  Everyone said "The President of the company".  Then my friend said, "So, if he is most important, that is who everyone talks to first, right?"  Of course the answer was no, the receptionist is who people talk to first.  "In other words, the person who is probably the least trained, and paid the least is the face and voice of the company", my friend asked.  This made some uncomfortable.  They realized that the most important people were not the high paid ones that made the big salaries, but that it started from the bottom and worked its way up!  Without the receptionist, no calls would be directed, without the workers in the plant, no product would be made, and so on.  The lesson here is that nobody is more important than the next person.  We are all equally important, we are all equally relevant.

Manners and respect are never out of date or "old fashioned".  Holding a door for someone else is just being kind and polite.  Saying "thank you" may brighten someones day that really just needed a little respect!  Even the smallest gesture of kindness or respect can turn a persons day from negative to if not positive, at least easier to get through.  

Am I being simplistic in my thoughts?  Maybe.  But I'll keep opening or holding doors open for others, smiling at strangers, and doing little things that don't cost anything but just may help someone have a little brighter day.  If enough of us start doing it, pretty soon, who knows, maybe being considerate and willing to work together will become commonplace again!
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