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Uncivil Civility

Recorded on January 13, 2011

It's time for common sense; I'm Ernest Istook.

The new political buzzword is “civility.” It's a worthwhile quality but in short supply. Mothers try to teach it to their children, calling it being polite or courteous.

There's a problem, though, when the political class gets involved. They notice lack of civility in others, but not in themselves. It becomes just another way to criticize your political opponents, while you and your political allies get a free pass.

When they say that government should enforce civility, they suggest things like a Fairness Doctrine or other controls on talk radio. That's when civility becomes censorship.

After all, we each have a First Amendment right to disagree with others—even if we're disagreeable in the way that we do it.

What we need is action, not words. Don't talk about civility, just demonstrate it yourself, rather than pointing your finger at others.

For common sense, from The Heritage Foundation, I'm Ernest Istook.