Civility crisis?

"Whether or not you think public shaming should be happening, it’s important to understand why it’s happening. It’s less a result of a breakdown in civility than a breakdown of democracy."

That's The New York TimesMichelle Goldberg. If, like me, you are struggling to know how best to respond to the relentless attacks on the body politic we are suffering these days, this is a good place to start. She doesn't answer the question of whether uncivil tactics will do us any good, but she does make it easier to understand how it is that we are no longer taking Michelle Obama's advice about low and high. My own take is that I doubt a few poorly chosen though understandable refusals of service by restaurant staff will make any difference — Trump supporters are unlikely to get any more annoyed with us progressives than they already are — but suspect there are alternative outlets for our frustration that are less problematic.

If you can't get past the NYT firewall, I've gone to the unusual, and slightly unkosher, length of posting a PDF of the piece here. Hope Ms. Goldberg and The Times don't mind too much, but this is too important not to share as widely as possible. The November mid-terms will depend on finding a way to motivate Democrats to get the polls without encouraging Trumpistas to do the same.

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