So what’s the relationship between civility and diversity? If we really think about the goals of diversity, we are seeking a workplace where different perspectives and experiences can be mutually respected and fostered for the betterment of the organization. If we can create a civil environment, we will be better able to cultivate a diverse environment. And if we fail to cultivate a civil environment, all of our diversity efforts will be for naught. To put it simply, a polite, courteous and welcoming work environment furthers diversity efforts by creating a workplace where people—all kinds of people—want to contribute to their fullest potential.
In my world there’s a kind of unrefined, unconscious, bestial civility. We critters don’t call it that, but being a tortoise I can’t even go to college, let alone be uncivil to people who do. And Tortoises can’t go around calling young, decent females sluts and prostitutes. Females are too important to us. However, Rush Limbaugh lacks the basic species loyalty of reptiles. In truth I wonder if the average tortoise doesn’t treat his fellow creatures better than some humans treat each other. Nature in the balance, even in the raw, takes care of issues like too many beasts reproducing so that life becomes unfit for all. You have too many uncivil talk show hosts.
Truth is, beasts are not savage like Rush. His crude behavior has been absolutely vicious. He growls and his jaws foam with saliva. You humans really ought to call his behavior evil. Evil seems to have a meaning in your world. We don’t have such a word in ours. For certain he’s the type of human who makes life unhappy though — and all for celebrity. Geez, what a joy stealer. Tortoises don’t need celebrity. Be happy, Rush, you’re worth millions.
As a tortoise I know my place in the scheme of things and that knowledge gives me peace and humility. I’m not ashamed to hang back and hide when danger approaches — not because chelonians are cowards but because we want to live into tomorrow to fulfill our natural function like leaf control. That’s why we’re here, you know. We know our purpose. You folks have got some vegetative life to control — a large orotund one in particular. Teleologically the man manifests no reason to be in the world. I can discern no purpose for him in natural processes.
In short we tortoises know our place in the great chain of being. Rush doesn’t. He fell off the chain. That’s okay, though, he was the last on the chain. Unlike many humans we don’t try to be humans as humans try to be gods. We know our place. We don’t interfere with the mating habits and instincts of horses and cows. They do their thing and we do ours. And so far as genetic engineering goes, you humans have had no moral, spiritual or moral dilemma in making pork lean and getting more white meat out of the turkeys. Tinkering with yourselves was inevitable. What’s your problem?
What’s your beef with birth control, Rush? Don’t be hypocritical. You humans fool with Nature every day. Luckily we reptiles have escaped your penchant for hybridization. The snakes scare you and turtles don’t need to be purebred — unlike a lot of talk show hosts. They have negative traits that could be bred out of them. What’s a little more animal control, huh? We could certainly do with fewer of you. Science gave humans the pill and God gave humans science. A lot of human women have been smart to take them.
But back to civility, we tortoises are very “civil” thanks to Natural determinations which we can’t change. We crawl about, have sex with each other and lay our eggs. Sometimes we produce more eggs than at other times — because Nature knows some danger to us is afoot, even a change in the climate. Don’t you know that Nature takes care of you humans in that way, too? But you have to pay attention — at least as much as the woolly worm. Have a little faith, Rush, that God works through science.
Nature provides for you as it does for turtles and tortoises. So, we don’t try to control our egg production. Even for us it is a very catholic principle. On the other hand, we’re not overpopulating the world — especially with talk show hosts who slither beneath the slimiest of snakes.
And also we don’t require 80 bizillion hours of loan-financed education before our lives get started. You folks do. So you have to put off a family until you can afford one. You have to postpone procreation, perhaps until after law school, but enough of you do get around to it. Fine, what’s the flap? Given the shape of your economy, I think you have plenty to worry about before you fret over what happens in a woman’s sex life. More often than not, it’s about health.
So, I figure that humans should be doing what you need to do to survive like caring for the health of your species. A lot of your preoccupation has nothing remotely to do with survival. Consider the tortoise and the lily. Go and happily empty your wastebasket. Be civil about it, too. Try to be reasonable with each other. Reason is why you are allegedly “better” than snakes — or so I hear.
Steadfast and cautious,
D. Taylor Tortoise