Note on the Fridge to Those Who Forgot Their Manners

No Telling

Dear Forgetfuls,

Our duly elected President has won the prestigious Nobel Peace Prize. Congratulate him. Those of you who are Americans, the honor is reflective. Be proud.

Off and on all day I’ve read comments written by those who 1) somehow think the Norwegian Nobel Committee chose Obama because he is black, 2) believe the Norwegian Nobel Committee watched too much MSM news on CNN and were brainwashed, and 3) insist he nominated himself. I even read one blog on FOX News where several posters referred to our President as “Buckwheat.” Inexcusable.

The Nobel prizes are international awards. If Those Who Are Forgetful would like to read more about the selection committee and the process, the official Nobel website is a good place to begin. I would also like to remind the Forgetful to brush up on their world view, as well as the way the world views us. We seem to be living in a time of tunnel vision and backyard-centric confusion. Main Street is important, but it is not the center of the universe. It never will be again.

The world is a large place, and every nation carries its own historical baggage into the international discussion. Civility is not optional. Someone else’s incivility is no excuse for your own. Ever.

Forgetfuls, go congratulate the first sitting U.S. President since Woodrow Wilson to win the Nobel Peace Prize. It’s an enormous honor and responsibility, and President Obama deserves the respect due regardless of your political leanings.

As my mama always said, mind your manners.

Sincerely,

Monda

38 thoughts on “Note on the Fridge to Those Who Forgot Their Manners

  1. Yes, yes, yessss!!! Manners are getting very scarce overall these days. Obama's award may be a bit surprising to some, but it's a GOOD thing, right???? I'm glad you're reminding people of this.

  2. Yes, Ma'am, Miss Monda. You tell 'em. I can't figure out why even the so-called moderates and liberals in this country publicly expressed surprise because Obama hasn't “done” anything yet. While we're minding our manners, we might review what “doing something” means, and how hard it can be to “do something” when folks are locked in the gridlock of politics as usual.

  3. Thank you for writing this. From my side of the pond (Belgium), it looks as if my country has lost its mind. Nobody seems to need ideas to debate anymore–you just need invective. Facts? Bah!

    THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU. You've made my day. Yesterday was made by the Nobel Prize committee.

    P.S. Today's word is 'umista'. Hey! U! Mista! Mind your manners!

  4. I actually happen to think that Mr. Obama has deserved the prize by having done and accomplished something. In his short term at the office he has managed to create an enormous amount of good will across the nations. We have regained the respect of Europe, we started rebuilding our relationship with Russia, Iran is going to allow international observers to examine its nuclear program. Did those people who criticize the decision of the Nobel committee see a better qualified person with a track record of more impressive achievements? This is simply a personal dislike or envy that motivates the criticism. And such motivation is never a good basis for a civilized debate.

    On the other hand, I think that the previous recipients have discredited the Nobel Peace Prize enough for a good argument to be made in favor of abolishing it altogether.

  5. Monda, I am to fair of a person to be patriotic. I'm not disrespectful towards the president and have started to like him. What I don't like about this whole Nobel Peace Prize is that they gave it to him for his potential, not his accomplishments.
    There are other people in the world who have accomplished a lot and deserved more than he did. On the Nobel's website they say so themselves, he won the prize “for his extraordinary efforts to strengthen international diplomacy and cooperation between peoples”(http://nobelprize.org/nobel_prizes/peace/laureates/2009/index.html). Do you see it fair that they award him for potential? Because I don't.
    I don't want to seem rude, but the last president to be award the Nobel Peace was Jimmy Carter in 2002. Yes it was out of house, but he had been the president of the U.S

  6. Monda,
    Thank you for this post! And, thank you to the Nobel Committee for honoring Barak Obama for the model, the hope, and the potential he offers to a cynical world. He's our paradigm shift and I hope Americans will change with him, not against him. Teachers know how crucial good role models are — and so does the Nobel Committee.

  7. Couldn't agree more! I can't pinpoint anything specific our President has done to deserve it, but I do believe his attempt at good will and trying to win back those friends-turned-enemies during the last administration should win him some sort of award.

  8. As always, very well said. I couldn't agree more

    Max was reading over my shoulder (And to totally brag he read the post and every coment without missing or having to sound out a word. He' 7.)and he said, “What is people's problem? It's totally cool President Obama won. I'm going to win one, too, when I grow up.”

  9. Amen, Monda!

    And, to book*addict: Obama has ALREADY made “extraordinary efforts to strengthen international diplomacy and cooperation between peoples.” I can elaborate but this is just a comment. The award is not for potential, but there IS much potential there. Also, Monda wrote that he is the “first sitting president” since Woodrow Wilson. Carter wasn't sitting, so your comment was misplaced, and your “I don't want to seem rude” speaks for itself.

  10. I've been following your blog for a while but never commented. This post has solicited me to finally engage. Thank you first of all. I totally agree with your writing and what I realize is that Americans many times JUST DO NOT GET IT. They do not have a good background of understanding to draw from before they speak. They just SPEAK. I am VERY proud and almost nervous for Obama. I know it is a lot of expectation placed upon him by the entire WORLD not just Americans. I am thankful an American could win the Nobel PEACE prize in this time of difficulty and hostility within our own country. I also recognize to that many Americans really don't understand the enormous responsibility America has amongst the WORLD and why Obama would give so many people HOPE. Thanks again for your thoughts, I do enjoy them!

  11. Thank you for posting this. Yes. Thank you. I could not have stated it better. Looking past the politics.

    Americans as well as the rest of the world should be reminded, the fact he was nominated and elected president is a reason to be proud. America has a sordid history of slavery and racism it has not been able to bury.

    It is still an issue but what does it say about America that people from all walks of life decided it was time for a change and chose a man with aspirations for this country that transcend race and culture?

    Only one thing separates America as unique and that is it's ability to fight for freedom and win. Have we forgotten how many from all races and backgrouunds have sacrificed their lives through out history to see America rise above such a stain in it's history?

    The Election of a Black president transcends what African Americans felt when he was elected. It is a milestone in the history of the world.

    His platform was pivotal. His message, if he accomplishes nothing else is deep and personal for every American.

    I CAN – CHANGE.

  12. BRAVISSIMA!

    I'm not sure I get it (the award, too soon), but I'm very happy about it and hope people will sit up and take notice and help this man fulfill his potential!

    CONGRATULATIONS to the Presiden! :o)

  13. Thank you, Monda. I'm sooooooo sick of the idiotic, ill-informed & flat-out rude partisanship directed at Obama these past few months, about everything. Enough.

    Well, as Jeff Foxworthy says, “you can fix ugly, but you can't fix stupid.”

  14. Here here! Isn't it funny how it is all positive before he gets elected, and then after he gets elected it is negative? What kind of society do we live in where our own president can't even talk to our kids at school about being the best they can be with out people freaking out? It is an honor for not only the President, but for the USA that we have someone that has indeed been given that award. We should focus on the good, and not the bad!
    Way to go Mr. President! We, the people of the United States are represented by someone that was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. Wow! That is something our children can really be proud of.

  15. I am all for civility. I enjoy your blog for its tone, among many other things. I agree that the only thing to say to President Obama is “Congratulations!” That does not, however, mean that is the only thing to be said anywhere.

    I think the Nobel committee has diminished their prize by awarding it with the express intention of helping someone achieve his goals, instead of recognizing someone who has already made significant concrete contributions to world peace. If we are going to start handing out prizes for good intentions, good will, potential, and loads of charm, why don't we just make my 8th-grader the high school valedictorian right now?

  16. I totally agree that the comments that were being made were totally out of line and basically stupid and ignorant. Really, though consider the sources these are the same people that have been making outlandish comments since Mr. Obama has become president. They are threatened by the fact that there is someone who is intelligent in the white house which has been conspiciously absent for quite sometime.

    That being said I congratulate Mr. Obama for the Nobel Prize, though traditionally it has been awarded for an achievement, where in this case there is none. To me this is more a commentary on the very little that is being done to promote peace in the world today that the award needs to be given on premise rather than action.

    However, if you can't respectfully and intelligently disagree then you should keep your mouth shut.

  17. I can say with complete confidence that everyone commenting here is a model of the exact civility I was talking about. We agree, we disagree, we read/listen, we offer opinion and congratulate. That's the way it's supposed to work.

    Clearly, the world is full of considerate, thinking people. My heart is full.

  18. Your Notes on the Fridge are my favorites. Please do more!

    This one was wonderful. Even though, I personally think awarding Obama the Nobel prize was a bit premature, there's no reason to be rude about it.

    I enjoy reading your blog, and it inspires to me to write more.

    Thanks!

  19. Gee, Maybelline, maybe you ought to read something other than blogs (no offence, ohtheresjustnotelling) – and see what changes Mr Obama has wrought (sorry, is that too big a word for you?) in world politics since his election? He has extended the hand of friendship to the Islamic world, re-engaged with Russia, re-engaged with Europe, need I go on? If you are American, you should be very proud, and even if not, you should applaud the vision of the Nobel committee.

  20. Goodness, ladies. And just after I bragged on everyone.

    Let me give you a good example of what a difference a day (and the advice of a good woman) makes:

    Michael Moore's initial reaction

    …and his second.

    You may not be a Michael Moore fan – I don't know if I'm one either – but it's the process here that's important. Instant reaction vs. a more objective reflection.

    Regardless, the last person on earth I'd want to be right now is President Obama. The expectations we have for him are both too high and too low – both extremes are unrealistic.

    Now, play nice.

  21. Manners are one thing. I was brought up to practice the impeccable manners my southern family instilled in me. And I do. But I was also brought up to fiercely value my right to my opinions, even (especially) if I find myself in the minority on any particular subject. And so, using my best manners, I will say that I politely disagree with the committee's choice this year. I am proud for Mr. Obama and his family. But I do wonder if there were others more deserving this year.

  22. I think Richard said it best. Little is being done towards peace, and that is why someone got the prize who hasn't really done anything yet for international peace.

    I don't think Obama has had time really to make a positive or negative effect on international stability. Honestly, any accomplishment or failure is going to happen I would guess a few more years later.

    I can understand, although I don't agree with what has been said by critics, that it would be hard to congratulate someone when people aren't sure why that person got the prize.

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