Election Day, Vol. 15, Issue 56

Dear Readers,

A long and anxiously-awaited presidential election is almost upon us. And like many citizens, Etiquetteer is anxious about the outcome. Etiquetteer is perhaps over-fond of quoting Agatha Christie's Cornelia Robson in Death on the Nile, who famously said "Cousin Marie says politicians aren't gentlemen." This does, of course, lead Etiquetteer to observe with the glimmer of a smile that neither of the presidential candidates of the Dominant Parties could be described as a gentleman.

Now Etiquetteer is going to ask something of you, something that no one else will ask you in this election. Etiquetteer wants you to thank the workers at your polling place, including observers, for their important part in the accuracy of the election results. One suspects that they labor away "unheralded and unsung," and especially with this election, Etiquetteer thinks they will appreciate the moral support even more. Just say "Thank you for your work today. I appreciate you." It will go far.

The presidential campaign, one of the ugliest if not the ugliest in American history, will shortly come to an end. The Perfect Propriety of the United States has been shredded and tattered almost beyond recognition after the "politics and knavish tricks" of the last two years. So Etiquetteer casts an anxious eye over the citizenry and wonders how we as a nation are going to restore Civil Discourse to its proper place in our National and Political Life. Answers are not apparent, but Etiquetteer cannot believe that a robust national dialogue can take place by eliminating contact with those with whom we disagree. Regardless of affiliation, we are all still Americans in this Experiment in Democracy together. Furthering a rupture in the citizenry does not help. Stay open, keep talking, and most importantly, verify the news that's reported with your own research.