“No Class”

 

From “The Rules of Civility and Decent Behavior” by George Washington to Kamala Harris – How the mighty have fallen.

It is said that John F. Kennedy, upon learning that Richard Nixon refused to give his concession speech in person on Election Night, mused that “he’s leaving like he came in — no class.”

No two words better describe the person next in line to the Presidency of the United States, Kamala Harris, who spoke these most dignified and exemplary words in public recently:

Kamala Harris Drops F-Bomb While Giving Advice: ‘Kick That F**king Door Down’

Vice President Kamala Harris dropped an f-bomb while dishing out advice during the annual Asian Pacific American Institute for Congressional Studies (APAICS) Legislative Leadership Summit in Washington, DC, on Monday.

Harris spoke to the crowd about breaking down barriers and handling opportunities and instances in which an individual is the “only one that looks” like themself.

I would embed the video here but the words alone are quite disgusting enough to make the point that we have declined precipitously in the 234 years since the Father of our Country set the standard for “Decent Behavior” in public, and, in my not-at-all humble opinion, this wretched person a perfect metaphor for one of the sleaziest, trashiest, ill-mannered, low-life administrations in American history. Quite possibly the lowest we have ever seen.

That said, another part of that report may be even more distressing than the utterance of one of the most profane words in the English language by a person who got her start in public life by being the (very public) paramour of a highly placed (married) official in San Francisco. What is at least almost as concerning is the fact that the crowd cheered this kind of crudeness coming from a person who could very well — and here I must insert a trigger warning, as the following thought may well be repulsive to many, including this author — have her finger on the nuclear button in the not-so-distant future.

We are witnessing a steady coarsening of American society, which many observers trace back to the 60s, and we seem to be seeing what may best be characterized as a “perfect storm” of incivility and rudeness for the past three years with the Biden-Harris-Garland triumvirate of political hackery; winning at all costs, including using third world tactics to try to eliminate political opposition of any kind.

 

What follows will be both (a) a brief listing of acts of manners and civility which have been almost entirely lost in our time, as well as (b) proof positive that I am, in the true sense of the word, a product of another time and another era. Here are a few niceties which seem to me to be missing from our current scene; it is not a listing which will be well received by those who may think some of these practices should have gone by the wayside long ago. Some of those thoroughly indoctrinated “wokesters” may be downright offended by them. So be it.

Not so very long ago my generation was taught:

  • To always hold the door open for a lady.
  • To stand when a lady enters the room. I still do, albeit painfully.
  • To insist that a lady, and/or an elderly person, enter a door first.
  • To refrain from the use of vulgar language in the presence of ladies.
  • To NEVER use the “f” word in polite company.
  • To learn the meaning of the phrase “polite company”.
  • To refer to gentlemen as Sir and to ladies as Ma’am.
  • To make an effort to be well groomed in public.

Disclaimer: I would not publish this without making the following qualifying statements. I am not a perfect gentleman and have been known, on very rare occasions [insert smiley face here] to use vulgar language. I also fully acknowledge, in view of my statements about the Biden gang, that President Trump is also a person of many rough edges and has been known to engage in “edgy” conduct himself.

As I have not given up altogether on the hope that there will be a resurgence of the kind of courtesy and civility we took for granted not so long ago, it might be appropriate to end with a few of President Washington’s Rules of Civility, written when he was sixteen, which seem to be uniquely suited to our current societal breakdown in those areas:

42. Let thy ceremonies in courtesy be proper to the dignity of his place with whom thou converses for it is absurd to act the same with a clown and a prince.

49. Use no reproachful language against any one neither curse nor revile.

59. Never express anything unbecoming, nor act against the rules moral before your inferiors.

We take our final message from Sir Winston and his oft-quoted words: “Never give up, never give up” as most fitting for this troubled time in our Nation’s history.

If we give up on America, where will liberty look for a home? The answer, of course, suggests itself and we have to believe that this tide of incivility will turn in favor of General Washington’s “Decent Behavior.”

Never give up.

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  1. Arahant Member
    Arahant
    @Arahant

    Jim George: to stand when a lady enters the room. I still do, albeit painfully.

    Gettin’ old ain’t for the faint of heart.

    • #1
  2. Jim George Member
    Jim George
    @JimGeorge

    Arahant (View Comment):

    Jim George: to stand when a lady enters the room. I still do, albeit painfully.

    Gettin’ old ain’t for the faint of heart.

    That’s the least painful way to put it! I could write a book! But “keep on keepin’ on” sure seems to be at least a partial solution! 

    • #2
  3. Jim George Member
    Jim George
    @JimGeorge

    Arahant (View Comment):

    Jim George: to stand when a lady enters the room. I still do, albeit painfully.

    Gettin’ old ain’t for the faint of heart.

    That’s the least painful way to put it! I could write a book! But “keep on keepin’ on” sure seems to be at least a partial solution! 

    • #3
  4. Jim George Member
    Jim George
    @JimGeorge

    Sorry. The system was determined that my little drama about the joys of aging would get more attention than I had planned. :-) 

    • #4
  5. Django Member
    Django
    @Django

    The mess on  the House floor involving Crockett, MTG, AOC, and a few others was either sick or amusing depending on one’s frame of mind.

    • #5
  6. Bryan G. Stephens Thatcher
    Bryan G. Stephens
    @BryanGStephens

    The idea that the house representatives are the senate our places of decorum is ridiculous. It’s only been in recent times that we’ve expected some sort of civility.

     Parliament and Great Britain seems to get this right.

    • #6
  7. Jim George Member
    Jim George
    @JimGeorge

    Django (View Comment):

    The mess on the House floor involving Crockett, MTG, AOC, and a few others was either sick or amusing depending on one’s frame of mind.

    One truly has to see this street brawl to believe it could possibly happen in the United States Congress.

    Nothing could make the points I have attempted to make in the post better than this video-watch it and weep for what has happened to our “standards of decorum.”  A grotesque travesty. There are some well-used phrases in my part of the country to describe these women but, well, civility enjoins me from using them.

    • #7
  8. Django Member
    Django
    @Django

    Jim George (View Comment):

    Django (View Comment):

    The mess on the House floor involving Crockett, MTG, AOC, and a few others was either sick or amusing depending on one’s frame of mind.

    One truly has to see this street brawl to believe it could possibly happen in the United States Congress.

    Nothing could make the points I have attempted to make in the post better than this video-watch it and weep for what has happened to our “standards of decorum.” A grotesque travesty. There are some well-used phrases in my part of the country to describe these women but, well, civility enjoins me from using them.

    The things that are most disappointing is the comments at X/twitter from the various factions cheering their side and attacking the others. E. g., calling Crockett “ghetto”, ranting that Alexandria Occasionally-Conscious would mop the floor with MTG in a debate, or the headline saying “MTG for the win”. Maybe the country deserves this. 

    • #8
  9. EJHill Staff
    EJHill
    @EJHill

    The most dangerous place in America is that space between a politician and a television camera. All it has done is to turn legislators into peacocks in eternal heat, preening and flourishing their plumage at every conceivable moment. The only argument against ridding the chambers and hearing rooms of the cameras and microphones is the inconceivable crap they would try to get away with if the cameras weren’t there.

    • #9
  10. Arahant Member
    Arahant
    @Arahant

    Jim George (View Comment):
    Nothing could make the points I have attempted to make in the post better than this video-watch it and weep for what has happened to our “standards of decorum.”  A grotesque travesty. There are some well-used phrases in my part of the country to describe these women but, well, civility enjoins me from using them.

    This is what comes from giving women the right to vote. Next thing you know, they become politicians, and catfights everywhere. 😜

    • #10
  11. Full Size Tabby Member
    Full Size Tabby
    @FullSizeTabby

    I am moderately old (68 years old, born 1956), and have always considered myself polite, civil, and decent, mostly thanks to my mother and to the church. I have never used vulgar language in the presence of other people (even other men). I grew up in southern California, and in late middle age moved to western New York state (rural, much more polite and civil than New York City). 

    But when I retired and moved to a semi-rural town in Texas almost six years ago, I quickly realized that I had to up my politeness. One of my favorite aspects of Texas culture is the high level of politeness expected (holding doors for others, whether man or woman), helping people who might need help (early on I was having trouble positioning my car at the pump at a crowded gas station, and a nearby driver jumped over to help guide me), “ma’am,” “sir” (especially from teenagers), and so forth.

    Texas culture continues to lead the nation in politeness and civility (in my not-so-humble opinion). 

    • #11
  12. Arahant Member
    Arahant
    @Arahant

    Full Size Tabby (View Comment):
    Texas culture continues to lead the nation in politeness and civility (in my not-so-humble opinion). 

    “An armed society is a polite society.”

    • #12
  13. Jim George Member
    Jim George
    @JimGeorge

    Arahant (View Comment):

    Jim George (View Comment):
    Nothing could make the points I have attempted to make in the post better than this video-watch it and weep for what has happened to our “standards of decorum.” A grotesque travesty. There are some well-used phrases in my part of the country to describe these women but, well, civility enjoins me from using them.

    This is what comes from giving women the right to vote. Next thing you know, they become politicians, and catfights everywhere. 😜

    We tried to warn them but they just wouldn’t listen to reason and common sense. And look what it got us. :-) 

    • #13
  14. Jim George Member
    Jim George
    @JimGeorge

    Full Size Tabby (View Comment):

    I am moderately old (68 years old, born 1956), and have always considered myself polite, civil, and decent, mostly thanks to my mother and to the church. I have never used vulgar language in the presence of other people (even other men). I grew up in southern California, and in late middle age moved to western New York state (rural, much more polite and civil than New York City).

    But when I retired and moved to a semi-rural town in Texas almost six years ago, I quickly realized that I had to up my politeness. One of my favorite aspects of Texas culture is the high level of politeness expected (holding doors for others, whether man or woman), helping people who might need help (early on I was having trouble positioning my car at the pump at a crowded gas station, and a nearby driver jumped over to help guide me), “ma’am,” “sir” (especially from teenagers), and so forth.

    Texas culture continues to lead the nation in politeness and civility (in my not-so-humble opinion).

    I could not agree more. Your description perfectly matches my experience which was fairly extensive as although we (our law firm) were based in Baton Rouge I had a lot of travel over the Sabine for various reasons, many related to our cases and some for pure pleasure. The latter included the incredible array of superb restaurants in Houston and one of the great Opera Houses in the world, the Wortham Theater Center and the Houston Grand Opera, just for two examples. Texans are very open and go out of their way to be courteous and civil and neighborly; however, cross them just one time and that will be the only chance you’ll get! Thanks for your great comment-Ma’am! Y’all come and set a spell, you heah? :-) 

    • #14
  15. Henry Castaigne Member
    Henry Castaigne
    @HenryCastaigne

    Arahant (View Comment):

    Jim George (View Comment):
    Nothing could make the points I have attempted to make in the post better than this video-watch it and weep for what has happened to our “standards of decorum.” A grotesque travesty. There are some well-used phrases in my part of the country to describe these women but, well, civility enjoins me from using them.

    This is what comes from giving women the right to vote. Next thing you know, they become politicians, and catfights everywhere. 😜

    Can’t tell if this is a joke or pure honesty. Also, my best boss is a female but she says that she has a brain with strong masculine traits.

    • #15
  16. Django Member
    Django
    @Django

    Henry Castaigne (View Comment):

    Arahant (View Comment):

    Jim George (View Comment):
    Nothing could make the points I have attempted to make in the post better than this video-watch it and weep for what has happened to our “standards of decorum.” A grotesque travesty. There are some well-used phrases in my part of the country to describe these women but, well, civility enjoins me from using them.

    This is what comes from giving women the right to vote. Next thing you know, they become politicians, and catfights everywhere. 😜

    Can’t tell if this is a joke or pure honesty. Also, my best boss is a female but she says that she has a brain with strong masculine traits.

    Florence King was fond of the term “virago” that, dictionaries be damned, she defined as a strong, intelligent, not traditionally feminine woman. I wish I could remember more or that I still had her books. IIRC, she said that such a woman was capable of leading women and also regarding them with contempt. 

    To her the worst combination was a “feminine disposition” coupled with a “masculine mind”. That combination she claimed led to a knight in petticoats, someone who was dedicated to saving the world while squashing anything she considered rude. 

    • #16
  17. Jim George Member
    Jim George
    @JimGeorge

    Full Size Tabby (View Comment):
    I am moderately old (68 years old, born 1956),

    I have 22 years on you and it appears that Jim McConnell and I are vying for the “Most Emeritus Ricochet Member” and if there  is no such thing there sure ought to be! :-)

    My favorite phrase, or one of them, at this stage of life is: So Far So Good! 

    I will now proceed to take my evening medication, consisting of old grape juice, preferably from Sonoma Valley, a/k/a J. Lohr Chardonnay! Life is good!

    • #17
  18. 9thDistrictNeighbor Member
    9thDistrictNeighbor
    @9thDistrictNeighbor

    There is a series of cursive handwriting copy books featuring Washington’s Rules for Civility that is popular with homeschoolers.  It’s the old fashioned trace the letters then write it yourself to practice. 

    When I was a teenager,  every ballet class began in the usual way with a plié exercise across the various positions.  We, a bunch of teen girls, would laugh at how our joints crackled.  Now I take Instaflex, but what’s a little crepitus among friends?

    • #18
  19. CACrabtree Coolidge
    CACrabtree
    @CACrabtree

    Jim George (View Comment):

    Django (View Comment):

    The mess on the House floor involving Crockett, MTG, AOC, and a few others was either sick or amusing depending on one’s frame of mind.

    One truly has to see this street brawl to believe it could possibly happen in the United States Congress.

    Nothing could make the points I have attempted to make in the post better than this video-watch it and weep for what has happened to our “standards of decorum.” A grotesque travesty. There are some well-used phrases in my part of the country to describe these women but, well, civility enjoins me from using them.

    In the 50s and 60s it was “alley cat” but the term has fallen from use.  Pity.

     

    • #19
  20. Jim George Member
    Jim George
    @JimGeorge

    CACrabtree (View Comment):

    Jim George (View Comment):

    Django (View Comment):

    The mess on the House floor involving Crockett, MTG, AOC, and a few others was either sick or amusing depending on one’s frame of mind.

    One truly has to see this street brawl to believe it could possibly happen in the United States Congress.

    Nothing could make the points I have attempted to make in the post better than this video-watch it and weep for what has happened to our “standards of decorum.” A grotesque travesty. There are some well-used phrases in my part of the country to describe these women but, well, civility enjoins me from using them.

    In the 50s and 60s it was “alley cat” but the term has fallen from use. Pity.

     

    With as much civility as I can muster under the circumstances, the sobriquets I had in mind had a few more rough edges than this insult to the fine, upstanding alley cats of the world!

    • #20
  21. OldPhil Coolidge
    OldPhil
    @OldPhil

    Jim George (View Comment):

    Full Size Tabby (View Comment):
    I am moderately old (68 years old, born 1956),

    I have 22 years on you and it appears that Jim McConnell and I are vying for the “Most Emeritus Ricochet Member” and if there is no such thing there sure ought to be! :-)

    My favorite phrase, or one of them, at this stage of life is: So Far So Good!

    I will now proceed to take my evening medication, consisting of old grape juice, preferably from Sonoma Valley, a/k/a J. Lohr Chardonnay! Life is good!

    We have several bottles of Lohr in our wine fridge.

    • #21
  22. kedavis Coolidge
    kedavis
    @kedavis

    Well, on the other hand, we’ve seen videos of legislatures in other countries turning into fist-fights, and sometimes worse.

    • #22
  23. Django Member
    Django
    @Django

    OldPhil (View Comment):

    Jim George (View Comment):

    Full Size Tabby (View Comment):
    I am moderately old (68 years old, born 1956),

    I have 22 years on you and it appears that Jim McConnell and I are vying for the “Most Emeritus Ricochet Member” and if there is no such thing there sure ought to be! :-)

    My favorite phrase, or one of them, at this stage of life is: So Far So Good!

    I will now proceed to take my evening medication, consisting of old grape juice, preferably from Sonoma Valley, a/k/a J. Lohr Chardonnay! Life is good!

    We have several bottles of Lohr in our wine fridge.

    I picked up a bottle of J. Lohr Paso Robles Cabernet Sauvignon couple days ago. 

    • #23
  24. She Member
    She
    @She

    Sigh.  The Kamala instance was clearly scripted for effect and applause.  And I’m not sure which is the more vulgar, her dropping the “F” bomb, or the demented cackle that follows it.  And those two half-witted harridans going at each other on the floor of Congress are equally as bad and should both be sat in the corner and put in a “time out.”

    The trouble with these sorts of utterances, and this sort of childish, “look at me being transgressive and trolling for votes,” behavior is that–when it’s on display for absolutely no good reason, or it comes out of thin air and inappropriately at that–the bar is raised for what one has to do on “special occasions,” when foul language or angry outbursts are actually deserved or come as the result of extreme provocation.  And things keep escalating, and the drain keeps on being circled as civility just washes away.

    • #24
  25. Jim George Member
    Jim George
    @JimGeorge

    She (View Comment):

    Sigh. The Kamala instance was clearly scripted for effect and applause. And I’m not sure which is the more vulgar, her dropping the “F” bomb, or the demented cackle that follows it. And those two half-witted harridans going at each other on the floor of Congress are equally as bad and should both be sat in the corner and put in a “time out.”

    The trouble with these sorts of utterances, and this sort of childish, “look at me being transgressive and trolling for votes,” behavior is that–when it’s on display for absolutely no good reason, or it comes out of thin air and inappropriately at that–the bar is raised for what one has to do on “special occasions,” when foul language or angry outbursts are actually deserved or come as the result of extreme provocation. And things keep escalating, and the drain keeps on being circled as civility just washes away.

    And yet we – not exemptng myself from this at all as I am also guilty – mumble and grumble about the lack of manners among many, certainly not all, of our young people but forgetting to ask ourselves what are they looking “up” to as role models? If they see this kind of street thug behavior by members of what not long ago was regarded as the very essence of accomplishment and courtesy and courtly manners (how pleasant that phrase is but how long has it been commonly used?) with a Member of Congress actually using the s___ word in a “formal” hearing setting, who can blame them for thinking this must be the way they are permitted to speak and act as well. Sigh, indeed.

    • #25
  26. Django Member
    Django
    @Django

    Jim George (View Comment):

    She (View Comment):

    Sigh. The Kamala instance was clearly scripted for effect and applause. And I’m not sure which is the more vulgar, her dropping the “F” bomb, or the demented cackle that follows it. And those two half-witted harridans going at each other on the floor of Congress are equally as bad and should both be sat in the corner and put in a “time out.”

    The trouble with these sorts of utterances, and this sort of childish, “look at me being transgressive and trolling for votes,” behavior is that–when it’s on display for absolutely no good reason, or it comes out of thin air and inappropriately at that–the bar is raised for what one has to do on “special occasions,” when foul language or angry outbursts are actually deserved or come as the result of extreme provocation. And things keep escalating, and the drain keeps on being circled as civility just washes away.

    And yet we – not exemptng myself from this at all as I am also guilty – mumble and grumble about the lack of manners among many, certainly not all, of our young people but forgetting to ask ourselves what are they looking “up” to as role models? If they see this kind of street thug behavior by members of what not long ago was regarded as the very essence of accomplishment and courtesy and courtly manners (how pleasant that phrase is but how long has it been commonly used?) with a Member of Congress actually using the s___ word in a “formal” hearing setting, who can blame them for thinking this must be the way they are permitted to speak and act as well. Sigh, indeed.

    Who gave Crockett the idea that it was OK to use that language in a “formal” setting? That horse has long been out of the barn. Must be going on fifteen years ago when some twit speaking for the Obama administration, Tommy Vietor I believe, got some flack for saying “Dude!” in an interview. In his temper tantrum response, he ridiculed the idea that we should be restricted to “the King’s English” in a modern era. 

    BTW, I thought there were three half-witted harridans involved. 

    • #26
  27. Arahant Member
    Arahant
    @Arahant

    Django (View Comment):
    BTW, I thought there were three half-witted harridans involved. 

    Only if you add all of their wits together would we get a half-wit.

    • #27
  28. Jim George Member
    Jim George
    @JimGeorge

    From the Babylon Bee (of course!):

    Congressmen Build Special Soundproof Girl Congress Next Door So The Men Can Get Some Work Done

    Article Image

     

    • #28
  29. Macho Grande' Coolidge
    Macho Grande'
    @ChrisCampion

    Arahant (View Comment):

    Jim George (View Comment):
    Nothing could make the points I have attempted to make in the post better than this video-watch it and weep for what has happened to our “standards of decorum.” A grotesque travesty. There are some well-used phrases in my part of the country to describe these women but, well, civility enjoins me from using them.

    This is what comes from giving women the right to vote. Next thing you know, they become politicians, and catfights everywhere. 😜

    Mistakes were made.

    • #29
  30. Laura Gadbery Coolidge
    Laura Gadbery
    @LauraGadbery

    Congressman Crockett’s display on the house floor the other day was referred to as “The Ghettosburg Address” by someone on TwitterX. Kinda funny, but at the same time sadly sums up the current culture. Make Decorum Great Again! 

    • #30
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