Leadership is everything. I have never posted anything political on this blog, because in fact our family is highly, intensely interested in politics. We constantly have discussions – mostly from the point of view of leadership, not ideology – especially during the national campaigns. Peter is from South Africa, I from Central America, our girls are in college, we are fierce about social justice, and questioning is in our bloodstream. Our faith in Jesus Christ has channeled that passion, and informs our worldview (more on that another time!).
Earlier this year I took Ben (the only one available to go with me!) to an Obama rally near the house. (I also took Ben and Faith to see George Bush during the last cycle. We believe in exposing the children to as much of life as possible!). I will write about it all separately later… it was an amazing experience, as we stood literally drenched (we had to wring our clothes out later), sharing umbrella space with hundreds of total strangers, of many ethnicities, waiting to go in. It was beautiful. Politics aside, it was a lesson in how hungry people are for true leadership.
Today’s news disturbs me. Kicking off three publications (NY Post, Dallas Morning News, and Washington Times) that have endorsed McCain is … well, I can’t quite say what it is. It makes Obama look thin-skinned, and surrounded by handlers and aides who are arrogant in their sense of entitlement. There is talk that it had to do with making room for documentarians to film the historic last few days of the inevitable winner. With his millions of dollars he couldn’t have chartered another plane for them? I don’t know. All I know is that this campaign seems very intolerant of any kind of questioning, because they are not used to it. Just yesterday there were new statistics on how biased the media has been toward the Obama campaign. It is an accepted fact. I personally think this treatment by the media is paternalistic, in that it seems to assume (and do his aides feel this way?) that he can’t handle anyone challenging him legitimately. (I’m not talking about all the extremists that accuse him of triggering the apocalypse).
Please, it is all about leadership! This is a very dumb move, and the story will have legs, because it reinforces the perceptions and fears that are already lurking in people’s minds. When followers put leaders on a pedestal and worship them, no good comes of it. Ever.
If you comment, please bear in mind two things:
1. I am not assuming any motivation one way or the other on Obama’s part, I am addressing the perception this creates and how it feeds into a narrative, accurate or not.
2. I don’t want to argue McCain vs. Obama here! I am talking about a leadership principle. Please limit your comments to how you feel about leaders and followers, as well as how you feel this might affect the election.