Just look at Capitol Hill.
Such men may appear as gentle as doves, yet inside be ravening wolves. They may speak of our Father and drape themselves with religious sentiment. They may even appear as angels of light.
Let me suggest that the proof of a leader’s sentiment and commitment must be found in their works, in their sacrifices over time, in their willingness to study and do the grunt work, and in their patience to crawl before they walk and to walk before they run.
Real leaders earn their position of trust and hold it dear, not for their own sake, but to share what they have learned and to protect those who aren’t as strong and to ensure success. They aren’t devotees of themselves. They aren’t anxious to grab the reins. They don’t promote an atmosphere of conflict. They are patient and fair and long-suffering. Power is something they bear, not something they seek.
Bad leaders, by contrast, are always impatient, pushing and shoving, making every little thing urgent and important so that they can bask in the limelight, always clawing and accusing others, always gossiping and trying to increase whatever power they have, always trying to make themselves look good by making others look bad, always patting themselves on the back and letting you know about all their good deeds, always name-dropping, always bragging either openly or by implication, always working some angle to benefit themselves, always trying to palm off blame –in short, they are grown up renditions of the nasty little bullies and teacher’s pets in grade school— only because they are grown men, you are apt to take them more seriously. Maybe. For a while.
The American people deserve ever so much better leadership than that, but you will have to demand it. And go out and draft it.
Otherwise, you see what you get—-whatever the cat drags in, whoever thinks he can make a buck, or worse.
I draw your attention to these simple facts in hopes that you will apply the yardstick I have just given you to those who propose to be your leaders. When you see men and women quietly going about their business, taking care of what has to be done without a lot of fanfare, a bell should go off in your brain.
When you see him or her eschew trivial conversations leading to gossip and instead keeping attention focused on the work at hand—ding! ding! — another clue that you may have a good leader in the making.
When you see that man or woman patiently persevere in times of personal and professional adversity, the bell should go off again.
And when they make no move toward the center stage and don’t grab the microphone and don’t advertise themselves and their accomplishments, why, then, you should really be suspicious that you might have someone worthy of being a leader.
Both Doucette and Hamilton are preaching a false Gospel. They say, “We can do anything, because we are the people!”
The same exact thing can be said of any gang on a rampage. We can all do whatever immoral, lazy, incompetent, unjust, unfair, violent, lawless thing we want—- until someone else asserts their rights and shows up with more guns.
Is that how you all want to spend your time?
Sooner or later the grown ups in the room have got to recognize this brand of leadership for what it is—and start looking for and demanding the mature, effective, unselfish leadership that is needed.