October 27, 2021

Where did common decency go?


I have been a resident of Rehoboth for more than 30 years. My children were educated in this town, and now 3 of my grandkids are students in our schools. I have loved this Town!! I love it’s many charms. it’s community activities. a great place to live!!

I have noticed, however, that over the past decade, an increasing hostility and anger surfacing on platforms such as Facebook… there appears to be an increasing disregard for the feelings, beliefs, opinions of others… an increasing indifference and intolerance of differences…an increasing need to be right with a corresponding demonization of those with opposing views… and above all, an increasing personalization of those differences, resulting in name calling, insult, attack, injury, all in the name of free speech…

Some will blame social media, some will identify Political Differences, others will speak of the effects of a global pandemic… all contributing factors, I’m sure… but the erosion of common decency, politeness, in the name of free speech, is beyond tolerance… there never was a time when all people in our fair town totally agreed with one another, when there were not rivalries, animosities, disputes, hostilities. people will be people. but when an innocent Facebook post results in attacking responses, one has to wonder what is happening here…

I tried to raise my kids to speak their minds, to ask questions, to voice opinions!! But I have also tried to instill in them the importance of respect, of kindness, of understanding, of compromise…. When did it become the norm to see all differences as worthy of attack… when did the Constitution begin to be used as a weapon or justification for these attacks…? this can only result in an increase in reactive response, anger, and retaliation, with good and kind people becoming increasingly polarized, isolated, and afraid…a sad and very scary thought.

We are better than this!!! The Town of Rehoboth is better than this!!

Jean Baxendale


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