DEAR MISS MANNERS: Many people refer to former senator Hillary Clinton by only her first name. As a woman and a believer in common courtesy, I find this to be incredibly disrespectful, especially when people address other candidates by either their last name only or by their first and last names. Am I the only person who feels this way?
GENTLE READER: No, but it is unlikely that the candidate agrees. Common courtesy is not the only factor involved. There is also politicians' desire to project "the common touch."
Like you, Miss Manners would prefer to see public officials and candidates for office addressed with the dignity of titles. But she yields to the overriding rule that people should be addressed as they wish to be.
Within reason, that is. When our first president proposed that he would be pleased to be called "His High and Mightiness," he was ridiculed into withdrawing the suggestion.