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Living by Golden Rule

Love thy neighbor. That is the essence of the Golden Rule.

Yet it seems many of us have forgotten about it — or at least how to abide by it — in today’s political environment.

Fortunately that is not the case across the board, as demonstrated by a pair of neighbors in Belmont who have different views on some important issues. While they may disagree about politics, both are able to see past that and appreciate the good person and reliable friend they have living nearby.

During the presidential campaign, Koel Davia decided to fly a flag to show his support of Democrat Joe Biden. Directly across the street, Bob Mills preferred the incumbent Republican Donald Trump. Soon the two found themselves competing over who could show the biggest visible display of support for their candidate.

That led to a bet between the two about the outcome of the election — they agreed the loser would fly the flag of the winning candidate for seven days. For the past week, Mills has displayed a Biden banner along with his existing pro-Trump materials. Davia said that isn’t exactly what he had in mind, but acknowledged Mills is keeping up his end of the bargain.

As of noon today, Mills will have fulfilled the terms of the bet. Given his feelings about the election, he almost certainly will take the Biden banner down right away. But his friendship with Davia will continue.

In Davia’s words, “It’s OK to have different opinions and not think less of the other person because they have a different opinion than you. I think if more people in this country felt that way, we’d all be a lot better off.”

Exactly.

In addition to being neighbors, Mills and Davia are members of the Belmont Volunteer Fire Department; Mills is chief and Davia a firefighter/EMT. In those roles, they are always ready to protect the lives and property of all their neighbors — without regard for a person’s opinions, attitudes or beliefs. They are dedicated to community service, showing care and compassion for all.

We thank both men for their service and for putting people before politics. We could all learn a thing or two from them.

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