There was a poignant column by Larry Elder on WND today entitled "My apology to my junkyard dawg dad." It revealed the hardship and sacrifice behind his father's rages and beatings. Please, go read the column. It's worth it.
But it was one of the comments at the end that struck me. A fellow wrote,
Larry Elder's father is a superb reason all of us--ALL of us!--need to be mindful how we treat others and keep our judgements in check. "Always be kinder than necessary...." After all, we never know what private Hells people are battling that we cannot see. The rude waitress may only have been rude that day--was she grappling with a family tragedy and trying to do her job at the same time? Give the benefit of doubt when dealing with family, friends and strangers...(just don't be a fool about it and put oneself in danger with the obvious troublemakers!)
ALWAYS BE KINDER THAN NECESSARY.
I can think of innumerable times when I was ruder than necessary to those who were rude to me. Or of times when I was just plain rude, period, to those who certainly didn't deserve it. Thinking back, it makes my cheeks burn in embarrassment. Haven't we all had those moments?
Such simple words, aren't they? Always be kinder than necessary. After all, this person is correct -- we never know what's going on in someone else's life that could be causing them to act unpleasantly.