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April 21, 2014

Andrew Silow-Carroll: Passoverkill? Suggestions to make next year's seders even more culturally sensitive

Sara Israelsen Hartley: Seeking the Divine: An ancient connection in a new context

Christine M. Flowers: Priest's execution in Syria should be call to action

Courtnie Erickson: How to help kids accept the poor decisions of others

Lizette Borreli: A Glass Of Milk A Day Keeps Knee Arthritis At Bay

Lizette Borreli: 5 Health Conditions Your Breath Knows Before You Do

The Kosher Gourmet by Betty Rosbottom Coconut Walnut Bars' golden brown morsels are a beautifully balanced delectable delight

April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review May 23, 2011 / 12 Iyar, 5771

Law, Etiquette and 5 Rules

By Alan Douglas




http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | Law is divided into civil and criminal. There are civil actions under the law; these are conflicts between individuals, organizations, and corporations that one of the private parties wants resolved. You can file a civil complaint against someone for hitting you, and seek damages for the assault and battery as a tort. There are criminal actions; these are cases where the common good or public values are under attack. If the government is aware of the attack they can proceed with a criminal complaint against the mugger.

If you are the victim of a criminal attack it does not matter what you want. Should the government want to send the mugger to jail the government can force you to cooperate, and go through the problems of a trial. The U.S. Attorney, State's Attorney or other law enforcement officials make decisions as to which cases go forth in the criminal arena; not the victims.

But there are other "laws" in every society- Etiquette. These rules are guidelines as to what is deemed common courtesy. Violate them at your own risk. The rules may be illogical or archaic but they exist for the same reason we post speed limits on highways. No one follows all the rules of etiquette, all the time (or the speed limit). If you adhered to all the rules of etiquette you would be hard pressed to put them into practice. Strict adherence to etiquette or English grammar is difficult, as In a similar vein, Attorney Clarence Darrow noted, "Even if you do learn to speak correct English whom are you going to speak it to?"

Kindness is another matter. It is about being thoughtful and acting in a way that is true to civility to others. Religions and society need civility, but kindness is what makes us all want to participate. We fear a world without kindness. Longshoreman philosopher Eric Hoffer observed that, "Rudeness is the weak man's imitation of strength." Snubbing others or acting in your self interest to harm others threatens can threaten society even though it may not be a violation of criminal or civil law. People claim some special right to damage others springing from grievances. public rules. People with these "grievances" cut in line ahead of you at Disney World or cut your throat to take your shoes.

My basic rules for proper decorum in life are Rule 1: Avoid Danger To Others. If you know the local people do not want you to take their picture, do not do it. You should not risk your safety and the safety of your companions to get a great picture as souvenir of your trip or to "educate" the heathens. It may not be a big deal to you, but it is to them. You may think voodoo is a bogus religion, but others believe it. People who prompt attacks from African tribesmen by taking their pictures or start arguments with fourteen years old militiamen carrying machine guns should be prepared for the consequences. Don't mess with religious icons, explosives or danger unless you are ready for everyone around you to suffer the reaction/consequences.

Rule 2: Be respectful, not subservient. You should let the other side know that you are following their protocol out of tolerance and respect, although your personal beliefs might be very different. You do not have to lecture everyone as to how they fail to meet your standards. It usually does little good. You do more good by showing a willingness to learn, to communicate and your expectation they will be reciprocated. Do not make that expectation absolute. You should decide if offending another is required in order to honor your personal beliefs. If individuals wish to be called Negro, Black, Colored, or African-American why would you not refer to them in the manner least likely to offend? If individuals wish to be called Mister, Alan, Al or Skippy wouldn't you refer to them in the manner least likely to offend? Whatever facilitates communication, and does not compromise your own values, should be the used.

Rule 3: Lie when appropriate. Publisher Clare Booth Luce supported this rule, and its benefits. She said, "Lying increases the creative faculties, expands the ego, and lessens the friction of social contacts." Remember that everyone's baby is cute. All grandchildren are unique, and exceptional….

Rule 4: Alert when it helps. My wife, Hermine, ever vigilant, to keeping me out of trouble, often reminds me to only act to alert others of their mistakes, etc. when the alert helps the other person to save face or make a correction. If their shirt is buttoned wrong, their zipper is unzipped or label is showing, mention it. If their new hairstyle is awful, they have a big ink stain on their shirt; leave it alone. Do not make them feel worse and do not exercise your curiosity. "How did you get that stain?" or "What's wrong with your leg?" aren't polite or kind.

Rule 5: Say, "Thank you." Gertrude Stein said, "Silent gratitude isn't very much use to anyone." Thanking people neither diminishes you, nor places you in their debt. It establishes your humility. Repeat after me….. "Silent gratitude isn't very much use to anyone." Now, go out there and start thanking people. Just before you go to sleep, tally up your "Thank Yous.

Being a good host is more about welcoming your guests than about the place settings. But to most people, the rules of etiquette are what can easily be used to judge others. So learn the rules (The napkin goes on your chair rather than the table when? Tip the soup bowl in which direction?) but practice them in a way that is kind. When it comes to protocol and codes of behavior, what you think, really doesn't matter; words matter, and words are trumped by actions. Poet Ralph Waldo Emerson said, "What you do speaks so loudly that I cannot hear what you say." So be good, for goodness sake; but do good, for your own sake.

Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many in in the media and Washington consider "must-reading". Sign up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.

Comment by clicking here.

JWR contributor Alan Douglas, an author, media executive, speaker, and attorney, lives con brio- except when he is grumpy.


Previously:

Inspiration
Confusing Kindness with Weakness
When Katie Couric Got Pulled Off the Air…
Don't second guess the deceased
Pain and legacies
Being in the No
The Sixth Sense
Dogs in Danger
Facebook, LinkedIn and the Zuckerberg Exit
Simon Bolivar Would Tell Glenn Beck to, ‘Put A Sock In It’
Children and Grandchildren
Swearing, Shoes, and Mark Twain
How my poor man's Porsche, Virgil, prepared me for life
Leases and Landing Gear
The Oscars, Obama and Job Creation
Damages and Penalties
Obstacles with Impossibilities
Making Others Feel Bad
Referrals and Recommendations
Woodpecker Frustration
Phrases, Not Resolutions
I Was A Crime Fighter and Super Hero
Comforting with Sympathizing
Nautical Worry Killers
Can You Keep A Secret?
Holiday Card Hazards
Gifts
Sharing, Transparency and Dumping
Red Alert
Readers Respond Regarding Rabbi
Readers: I Need Your Help with my Rabbi
Humphrey Bogart and P. T. Barnum on Fighting with Family and Friends
Columbus, Honors and Hound Dogs
The Free Lunch
When your child suffers
Conversational Transmitted Diseases
Conservative, Liberal or American
Paris, Antarctica and Shopping
Personal Protection
Dispute Resolution
Jumped or Pushed?
Friends and Acquaintances
Revenge and Vindication

© 2010 Alan Douglas

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