Another unusual character in my life was my former barber. He’s no longer my barber, as he’s retired. He and his long-time friend used to man chairs together at a local barber shop they co-owned. The friend was openly gay, and my barber used to razz him unmercifully about it, and made negative comments about gays in general.
It took me awhile before I figured out this was just his way, and, his gay buddy seemed to not care, so why should I?
I began going to this barber during the Clinton years. He hated Bill Clinton, and everything he stood for. But, I never heard him address the man directly. There were never an ad hominem comments. Nothing about what a jackass he was, anything like that.
I’m not a big fan of such attacks, myself, because they don’t address the actual issues. I think they’re a lazy way to argue. But obviously, this guy just couldn’t stand him.
So, I asked him one day, out of morbid curiosity.
He said, “Do you know who I hate more than President Clinton? People who don’t show the Office of the President respect! Those guys who say “Slick Willie”, and “Bill”! The man’s the President for chrissakes!
Show some respect!”
The scales dropped from my eyes. I had (and have) similar disregard for the man. But my barber was right.
And the same principles apply today.
I’m not a fan of the current President or his Administration’s policies on most everything. And, I may even question election tactics, much as President Bush was questioned a few years back.
But, the man is the President. The system dictates if we don’t like what he’s doing, address the policies and vote against him, next opportunity.
Name-calling only makes us look juvenile. And, doesn’t address the issues.
My barber was right.