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Is Civility a Sign Of Weakness?

Posted by Zamir Ben Etzioni on November 16, 2009

When the President bowed to Japanese Emperor Akihito it ignited a firestorm of righteous indignation among the macho members of the hard right. It was not even a story, other than the right’s reaction to it. President Obama, unlike the previous President, not only actually was elected to the nation’s highest office, his life, unlike Bush’s life, is one of accomplishments against odds stacked against him. George Bush was born wealthy, he never had to struggle, therefore, he never really had the confidence to be himself, to do what he thought was right. Obama, on the other hand, had to fight his way upstream, so to speak, from poverty to the opulence he enjoys today. No matter what you think of Obama, this is a man. He doesn’t have to act tough. He is tough, he’s proven that. Bush talked tough, Bush swaggered, the sure signs of a man filled with self doubt. I admire Obama’s self assurance as I despised Bush’s swagger. The look on the face of the Emperor and his wife spoke volumes, the most powerful man in the world was a humble man. We should be humble too. Humility is a good thing.

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