I travel a lot, and I'm pretty sure what I experienced yesterday was an elevated level of niceness. Niceness to those around us, as simple as it sounds, reflects the core principle of our republic--the principle that each of us has worth, or value. That principle is the foundation for systems of justice and governance that are supposed to provide each of us equal treatment--treatment reflecting our equal value as human beings, regardless of wealth, health, occupation, race, gender, orientation or any of a multitude of other differences arising from circumstance or choice. I suspect that this is the way most of us have chosen to respond to the utter lack of niceness in our national political dialogue these days. I hope I am right. Because giving each other that basic R-E-S-P-E-C-T is one of the most important things we can all do to be accountable citizens.