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The loss of common courtesy

Melvin B. Miller
The loss of common courtesy
“Man, I stopped doing New Year’s resolutions. I always give them up by the end of the month.”

At the start of the new year, many people’s thoughts turn to quality of life matters. Sharp retailers understand this. That is why there are so many sales for home goods and bedding. The high cost of household furniture and kitchen appliances makes it difficult for the average working family to upgrade the quality of their household goods. But there is something that everyone can do to upgrade the quality of their neighborhoods. It is only necessary to be considerate of others.

It is relatively easy to develop bad habits that are detrimental to others. Not too many years ago, before fast food restaurants were everywhere, it was unthinkable to eat in your car or while walking on the street, and dump your trash on someone else’s doorstep. Now this practice is quite common. People can come home from work and have to clean up someone else’s trash from their front door.

Almost equally annoying is to be awakened from a nap by loud music from a car parked in front of one’s house. What makes the matter especially annoying is that the driver of the car might not even live in the immediate neighborhood.

Communities develop from neighborhoods when residents are considerate of one another. Some critics assert that it is unreasonable to expect courtesies from neighbors who are not homeowners. If that is true, then what is the basis for renters to complain that outsiders are coming in to buy the property and redevelop it? Why should homeowners not want to see other buyers come in and be respectful neighbors?

Perhaps the problem of having concern for others is even more extensive. Years ago before cars were designed with mechanical direction signals, drivers had to stick their hands out of the window to give signals even in inclement weather. Now that all it takes is to push a lever, note how infrequently drivers consider other autos on the road.

Everyone benefits from thoughtful behavior. Being a good neighbor inspires others to do likewise, then everybody wins. A good New Year’s resolution is to be thoughtful and considerate of others in the neighborhood.

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