Respect Maxine Waters and others in public places

Published 5:58 am Saturday, July 7, 2018

By Bobby Tingle


United State Senator Maxine Waters deserves your respect in public. She deserves your respect in restaurants, grocery stores, at the gas pump and anywhere else she may be found in the normal course of her day.

All public servants deserve respect in public. All public servants deserve respect in restaurants, grocery stores, at the gas pump and anywhere else public servants may be found in the normal course of their day.

Political differences, religious differences, social differences, ethnic differences, policy differences or any other way in which folks differ does not give one or the other a right to publicly show disrespect.

We can and should exhibit respect as we engage in disagreements, which may result in conflict.

For example, employees of a business serving you deserve your respect even if you feel the product or service delivered is below the standard you are paying for. There is a respectful way to handle legitimate complaints without doing so in a demeaning manner toward employees, management or owners.

Of course you, the customer also deserve the product or service paid for.

At this point you may be right to ask, ‘is the pot calling the kettle black?’

At times this newspaper and the news media in general have engaged in personal jabs to express a particular viewpoint at the personal expense of an individual.

Reporting news and expressing opinions is not offensive, so long as neither engage in personal attacks.

News is sometimes good and uplifting.

Editor Dawn Burleigh attended and reported on a recent event where ladies from the community gathered to model dresses and hats.

They had genuine fun. (I don’t know this from attending. I know this from the report Burleigh published in The Orange Leader and from her comments in the office. Apparently, Essie Bellfield has the potential for a career in modeling.)

News is sometimes not so good. Reporting both is our duty and the duty of every news outlet.

And you cannot escape the obvious, if not always admitted, bias in what news is reported and how it is reported.

Reporting news should always be done with respect toward the subjects of the news report.

News media also engage in opinion.

Traditionally news media have done so in writing and in cartoons.

Each have their place. Each provide a mode for communicating an opinion.

Opinions by nature show a particular bias for a viewpoint which will be opposite of the viewpoint of others.

We all have equal rights to our opinions and biases.

We should all respect those who oppose us. We don’t have the right to impose our opinion or our bias in a personally demeaning way.

We all need to learn the art of agreeably disagreeing with others while displaying respect.

I suggest we all serve on a non-profit board of directors.

Resources are scarce when operating a non-profit organization. In most cases the needs are endless. Therefore hard decisions must be made. This often means deciding which needs get met and which needs go without.

These decisions are often made by board members who often disagree vigorously.

But as the arguments are presented, the votes are cast, the decision is made and the plan is executed individual members should do so displaying respect among themselves.

Elected and appointed government officials do not deserve any form of humiliation whether in public, in private or in the media.

They deserve a fair examination of their decisions which may come in the form of verbal or written discussion. But always with respect and always with the realization that you could be on the losing side of a vote or public opinion.

The call to publicly harass public servants is inexcusable.

I would hope Orange County residents will rise above such calls.

City and county officials, employees and appointees work for us. They provide services, maintain order, impose standards and allocate resources.

We collectively benefit from the services they render.

Publicly disgracing public servants is wrong. Let’s rise above it, no matter our differences.


Bobby Tingle is publisher of The Orange Leader. You can reach him at