Supervisor calls for civility

Steve Bowen quoted George Washington at Thursday night’s Board of Supervisors meeting.

The District One rep, who’s now in his fourth term, is wrapping-up his year as President of the Virginia Association of Counties (VaCO) and said he had the honor of taking a leadership class at Washington’s estate, Mount Vernon.

Bowen revealed that he scored a 50. “Some may say, ‘Good God, that’s a poor leader.’ But I look at it like I’m half of George Washington,” he chuckled.

Bowen’s larger point was that he obtained a copy of Washington’s work, “Rules of Civility and Decent Behavior.”

Bowen read the following excerpt that was written by Mt. Vernon staff: “‘Honor remained one of Washington’s core values, but he also believed that if taken too seriously, it could lead to decidedly uncivil behavior. In so many ways, Washington encouraged his fellow Americans to follow rules that promoted politeness, respect, and honesty. These behaviors would foster a society where people with different backgrounds and diverse points of view could debate and disagree without destroying the republic that Washington had worked so hard to create.’”

Bowen encouraged citizens to read the book. “I keep it with me to ‘keep me on the ground.’ Because sometimes it’s hard to hear the criticism -- undeserved criticism -- without striking back. We need to be better than that.”

Bowen’s remarks received applause and a “Well said” from citizen Tom Taylor in the audience.

Blackstone Courier Record

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