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Are We There Yet? vol. 218 Thumbnail

Are We There Yet? vol. 218

In an Opinion piece in the New York Times in April, Frank Bruni wrote about the most important item that he teaches his students at Duke University. It wasn’t grammar and spelling, both of which he considers very important. It’s not even about teaching them “how much they have to learn – and how much they will always have to learn.”

The most important thing he teaches is humility. “We live in an era defined and overwhelmed by grievance – by too many Americans’ obsession with how they’ve been wronged and their insistence on wallowing in ire. This anger reflects a pessimism that previous generations didn’t feel. The ascent of identity politics and the influence of social media, it turned out, were better at inflaming us than uniting us.”

Toward the end of the piece, Mr. Bruni references Loretta Ross, a longtime racial justice and human rights advocate who often preaches humility and its importance in allowing people with different views to be comfortable speaking their minds. Without humility, people may seek their echo chambers simply to avoid the drama.

Another term that comes to mind is respect. Both humility and respect are important components if we are to have a dialogue about differing opinions. We may have to start purposefully teaching these concepts as the modern, social media, trash-talking dialogue is not working. Let’s hope that everyone can show more humility and more respect for everyone, especially those with whom we disagree. As C.S. Lewis noted, “Humility is not thinking less of yourself, it’s thinking of yourself less.”

Take care and stay safe.


The Veil (Hulu)

"The Veil" is an international spy thriller series that explores the surprising and fraught relationship between two women who play a deadly game of truth and lies on the road from Istanbul to Paris and London. One woman has a secret, while the other is on a mission to reveal it before thousands of lives are lost. In the shadows, mission controllers at the U.S. CIA and French DGSE must put differences aside, as difficult as it may be, and work together to avert potential disaster before it is too late.