As our country navigates another election year, democracy is on display in every facet of American life. Regardless of age, upbringing, belief system or political affiliation, we’re all passionate about protecting and preserving our great nation and those liberties that we all cherish.
My line of work involves executive leadership and oversight of a life plan community, Ohio Living Cape May. Each day, I listen to and learn from older, more “seasoned” individuals who have lived through countless presidencies, wars, social and economic changes, and different seasons of life. These folks help keep Cape May rooted in respect and rich in wisdom.
In past election years, many senior living communities like ours routinely banned campaign signs in an effort to curb disagreements over politics. But in an effort to encourage open dialogue, celebrate diversity and support personal expression, Cape May and other communities have lifted some restrictions on content and placement of campaign signs in recent years.
Needless to say, our residents have taken advantage of these changes to display signage in support of their candidates of choice. If you were to drive though our community, you’d see campaign signs reflecting both sides of the aisle.
What’s more impressive, though, is what you don’t see. It’s the mutual respect, civility and understanding our residents, staff and volunteers extend to one another regardless of whose names are displayed in their flower beds.
While there is no one-size-fits-all recipe for being a good neighbor, our residents have shown me that continually practicing inclusivity and respect, no matter who or what you support, are key ingredients in this formula.
Brad Reynolds is Executive Director/Administrator at Ohio Living Cape May in Wilmington.