Death of Civility Project

January 20, 2011

At a time when civility seems needed more than usual in American politics, it is sadly ironic that evangelical public relations guru Mark DeMoss announced last week that he is ending his "Civility Project." DeMoss explained:

After only three members of Congress agreed to sign this Civility Pledge last year I've decided to shut it down. ... I'm worried about where we're headed as a country on the civility scale.
I was already worried, too, but this news worries me even more. The three congresspeople who signed the civility pledge were: Senator Joseph Lieberman of Connecticut (who announced this week he is retiring), Representative Frank Wolfe of Virginia, and Representative Sue Myrick of North Carolina. The pledge simply declared:
1. I will be civil in my public discourse and behavior.
2. I will be respectful of others whether or not I agree with them.
3. I will stand against incivility when I see it.
DeMoss noted that the project received a lot of uncivil and even vulgar attacks, including many from his fellow conservatives. Hopefully, someone will be able to find more success than DeMoss in promoting civility in American politics.