>One of my favorite expressions is, "With all due respect…" Usually the user of this phrase feels that the person she is addressing is owed no respect, and proceeds to speak accordingly. Yet it is not considered rude because the speaker prefaced her comments/insult/opinion with a polite-sounding phrase. It is so damn clever.

I was thinking about respect this afternoon for a variety of reasons. One, I am always annoyed when people demand that I respect their religious beliefs but it is clear that those beliefs include zero respect for me. So you have a religion. Big whoop. Lots of people have religions. Respect is a two way road. Just because you subscribe to a religion does not mean I am obligated to respect it unless you can show some respect for me, too. I treat others the way they treat me. You want to be treated with respect? Fine. Treat me the same way. (The situation with pharmacists refusing to dispense birth control made me ponder this.)

The other thing that stuck Aretha Franklin in my skull today was a semi-anonymous comment I received on my post about not having kids. "Friend in Deed" said, in part:

I find it interesting that women who think they are so "liberated" and desire to be considered equal to male counterparts take on not the best characterics [sic] of the opposite sex, but in fact the worst characteristics of the male species, in this case rotten mouths and showing their lack of words to describe their angst or frustration. I am sure you are all intelligent and articulate. Think on it awhile. The most incredible men I know don't find the need to swear to express themselves, neither do the great women. Elevate yourselves and you will elevate those around you through your example.

I thought about it for a while, as you requested. With all due respect, I suggest to "Friend in Deed" (and what does that mean? As far as I know, you are not my friend in illustrious action nor are we part of any sort of instrument containing some legal transfer, bargain, or contract that I am aware of) that you step off that holier-than-thou perch you are standing on and shove it up your ass. That should elevate you by example.

What the fuck is that all about? At least I gave myself a hearty chuckle in composing my response. Sock it me.