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On Principled Behavior

                                         Jakob Zetwick, Spokane Lodge #34

     Upstanding behavior seems to be a                                          e point of this writing is that if we
     struggle in our society. Admittedly,                                    look at nearly every Master Mason,
     I am no saint myself as none of us                                      in the United States, we can   nd a
     are, but I feel that since becoming a                                   Masonic ring on a   nger, a Masonic
     Mason, and more especially, since                                       sticker or emblem on their car, and
     being raised to the    ird Degree, I                                    something on their social media that
     have challenged myself more o  en                                       might indicate a Masonic a   liation.
     to speak less, observe more, and to                                     We  should  be  careful,  Brothers,
     strive not to o  end. Even with that                                    in that our actions could tarnish
     reminder  that  I  am  a  representative  of  something  the legacy that our Brothers of past and present have
     bigger than myself, there continues to be this urge to  worked so hard to achieve.    ere’s a meme   oating
     fall back into old habits. Presently, there are several  around that says, “You’re somebody’s impression of
     means to dive into heated disagreements and outright  Freemasonry.” Let’s think about how our actions/
     arguments in our society.                              words leave people feeling and strive to make that
                                                            feeling positive.
     With the constant ability to interact with people on
     social media, several platforms have opened the gates
     to comment   ippant remarks towards each other and,
     in some cases, just being outright rude towards people.
     It is far too easy for a person to go on social media,
     see something they feel as controversial/outrageous,
     and dive down the rabbit hole of comments that
     exist on that thread. It’s even easier to engage with
     those  they do  not agree  with, especially in  a way               Bigfork Lodge No. 150
     that is o  en uncharacteristic outside of social media.         Supporting Their Community
     While there have been several times where I have
     been the perpetrator of ill remarks, I now   nd myself
     more  willing  to  pull  from  the  grips  of  social media
     comment desire, o  en reminding myself that my
     negative contribution will likely not lead to anything
     productive. Although social media is certainly an easy
     forum to pass along a negative comment or incite an
     online argument with a stranger, it is not the only
     means to assert aggression in our society.

     A past action that I found myself doing all too o  en
     was demonstrating my displeasure with fellow
     drivers. Yea, I was the guy who wasn’t afraid to   ip
     a bird, or two, or   ve (depending on the extent of my
     travels) while driving down the road. Re  ecting back,
     I know this behavior was never productive other than
     providing myself a sense of momentary relief. Now
     I might still say words to myself within the con  nes
     of my own vehicle like I said I am not a saint by
     any means, but what I have challenged myself to do
     is refrain from hand gestures.    ink about it, when    Bigfork Lodge No. 150 recently presented a $1000.00
     you’re at the grocery store, you don’t   ip someone o     check to the West Shore Food Bank. Checks were also
     or gesture wildly because they nearly hit you with their   presented to the Bigfork Food Bank and Veterans Food
     shopping cart. Well, most of us wouldn’t demonstrate    Bank in Kalispell for $1000.00. Bigfork Lodge No. 150
     irrational behavior like that. I suppose there are a few   has contributed $6000.00 to food banks. Pictured on the
     exceptions.                                             le   is LeRoy Lau, Secretary of Bigfork Lodge No. 150.

      Montana Freemason                                                                       Page 10                                                March 2020   Volume 96 No. 2
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