A tale from Lake Chaubunagungamaug.

Author:Kristie, James
Position:LEADERSHIP - Reprint

From Civility in America: Essays from America's Thought Leaders. Copyright [c]2011 by DGI Press. Published by DGI Press, a unit of The Dilenschneider Group Inc. (www.dilenschneider.com).

CIVILITY is a core principle of public life. Without it we live in Thomas Hobbes's world where life is "solitary, poor, nasty, brutish, and short" Everyday life is indeed a struggle to fulfill our duties to self, family, and community. As we go about our daily rounds, we see that conflicts are unavoidable, limits are tested, and patience is worn away. Civility is our answer to Hobbes's idea that life is no more than a "war of all against all." Civility offers a better way to live.

Civility is based on the idea that we should take into account the interests of others. We should treat others the way that we would like to be treated ourselves. As a child growing up in Massachusetts, I learned of the story of Lake Chaubunagungamaug. Translated playfully from the Native American Nipmuc language it means...

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