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Let's show leaders how to get along

 


When did it become OK — commonplace, even — to treat other people with so much disrespect? When did it become socially acceptable to attack people for expressing their beliefs?

The United States used to be the cool kid on campus, the country others imitated, the place immigrants desired. Now, the squabbling amongst ourselves is almost embarrassing. Foreigners and their media mock us, question us and shake their collective heads at us.

You can say that what is happening on a national level isn't affecting us here in rural Sanders County, but it is. From product shortages to an increase in COVID cases, we are starting to feel the effects of a country of people who just can't get along. Is it only a matter of time before people exercising their First Amendment rights in our small towns are met with tear gas and armed federal agents?

All of this bickering has driven a wedge between us — among families, among friends, among communities. We need to come together. How? By finding common ground, compromising and working toward solutions. There is so much dividing us — liberal or conservative, Black or white, mask or no mask, this side or that side. But we're ALL Americans, and more importantly, we're all human beings. We're all in this together. Our common goal should be to make the world a better place for our kids and grandkids.

That begins with treating one another with respect. This starts with people in leadership positions. Coaches, mayors, pastors, principals, sheriffs, governors, Congressional members: We need you to come together and set good examples. We need you to lead and help our nation heal.

If respect doesn't come from the top, then maybe it needs to start in rural Montana. One small act of kindness can be paid forward again and again. What we do here to one another — on social media, in parking lots, at the grocery store — has just as much impact as what is happening at the national level. The seeds of kindness, Sanders County, can be planted right here in our hometown.

 

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