COLUMN: The value of teaching respect

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I don’t have children, but I’m around nephews and nieces who for the most part are polite and considerate young people. That’s a credit to their parents.

As we all know, civility among children and adults isn’t as universal as it once was. We have road rage, salty language that would leave a pirate red-faced and people of all ages who lack patience, compassion and general regard for others.

Parents are the primary teachers of good manners and recently I witnessed a good example of an adult passing on an important lesson.

I was driving to Rockport a few weeks ago and met an oncoming funeral procession. The car in front of me pulled over, as did I, and the driver unbuckled a child from either a car seat or seat belt. The boy slid onto the adult’s lap and watched the procession pass by. He might have asked why people were pulled over and I could imagine the parent or grandparent sharing a message about respecting the life of someone who had passed away, even a stranger.

We show respect for ourselves by being gracious in defeat. I try to photograph a few Little League or Babe Ruth games each summer and it’s hard not to notice the sad looks of players whose teams are losing, especially when playoff games are under way.

A few weeks ago I watched a coach gingerly remind a dejected player that “we can’t win all the time.”

Winning is fun. Losing isn’t. But learning how to lose graciously is an important skill.

We show care for others when we perform small acts of mercy. I detect a warm feeling each Memorial Day while watching Scouts place flags on the graves of veterans or volunteers picking up litter along roadsides.

Speaking of litter, I’m amazed at the amount of debris I see alongside highways and county roads. From fast-food bags, aluminum cans and plastic bottles, it’s clear too many people don’t find anything wrong with throwing out trash while driving.

Chapel Dedication Stayed Dry

Thanks to the many people who stopped by the family chapel near New Boston June 18. The rain that fell Saturday morning quit by late morning and the evening was comfortable.

Thanks to family and friends who attended Mass that evening. Your presence made the day extra special.

The chapel is still a work in progress but is nearing completion.

I’ll plan an open house this fall when the work is finally done. I’ll post a few photos online of Saturday’s event in the multimedia section of this site.

Five July Weekends

A reader brought in a note she picked up from a History Channel program about the month of July. The month that begins Friday has five Fridays, five Saturdays and five Sundays.

It will be 832 years before that happens again. Enjoy those weekends.

Gardens Growing

I have heard from several people reporting that they are beginning to sample the first tomatoes of the season. A rainy spring didn’t help most people get an early start in the garden patch, but I’ve seen several nice examples of hard work, from fast-growing sweet corn to tomatoes.

I’ve also noticed melons for sale at area roadside stands.

Don’t forget Tell City’s farmers market Wednesday afternoons and Saturday mornings on Ninth Street to the east of City Hall.