David Mould: An obit for civil discourse (Opinion)

Civil discourse departed from this world in 2016 — or maybe it was much earlier — to join mutual understanding, tolerance, open-mindedness and other worthy values in heaven, where she is singing with the angels of our better selves.

Civil discourse was born here, there and everywhere, at different times in history. She didn’t like to talk about her age, quoting Lady Bracknell from Oscar Wilde’s “The Importance of Being Earnest”: “A woman should never be too accurate about her age. It makes her appear calculating.”

Civil discourse passed away after a long and courageous struggle with intolerance, rumors, racism, conspiracy theories, trolls and bots.

She was preceded in death by her father, conflict resolution, and mother, charity patience. She never married but millions around the world count themselves as her children and will continue to fight for the values for which she stood.

Civil discourse lived an active, fulfilling life of healthy, honest debate and discussion. She had a long and distinguished career as a member of political parties, religious groups, trade unions and social movements. She will be fondly remembered as one who brought people together, listened to them and understood their differences.

There will be no funeral or memorial service. In her will, civil discourse stipulated that she should not be buried in the cemetery of lost causes. Instead, she asked those who shared her values to symbolically scatter her ashes far and wide by respecting the opinions of others. She believed she would be reincarnated, in another form and with another name, but with the same mission.

In lieu of flowers, please go up to someone who disagrees with you, tell them you want to hear why they think the way they do and ask them to listen to your views.

RIP civil discourse. You will live again.

David Mould, of Charleston,

is a professor emeritus of media arts

and studies at Ohio University.

Funerals for Wednesday, December 11, 2019

Adkins, Dorsel - 11 a.m., Casto Funeral Home, Evans.

Anderson, William - 1 p.m., Foglesong-Casto Funeral Home, Mason.

Kalinoski, Peggy - 3 p.m., Goshen Baptist Church Cemetery, Kenna.

Pyles, Jack - 1 p.m., Wilcoxen Funeral Home, Point Pleasant.