Leadership should be from the front, even when it is behind the scenes.
Leading the way means to take the first steps and chart the course that others will do well to follow. This can be done behind the scenes as is the case with most organizations that rely on volunteers. While the volunteer army goes forth to accomplish the goal, their success heavily relies upon the plan and focus designed by the leadership who may very well not be with them on the battlefield.
Or in other words, a good farmer does not need to directly harvest the crop if he has a harvest plan that can successfully be followed by his field hands.
The human story that shreds the heart of so many, also seems to bring out the vile ugliness of others.
When people feel a burning need to promote and protect themselves at the expense of another, we see the ugly nature of humanity in its fullness. Turning away from this ugly sight does not absolve one from its contaminants. Like an insidious disease, you either fight it or succumb to it, you do not simply ignore it hoping it will go away.
During a discussion with my children about the varied political theater which has dominated the news during the last 12 months, this rhetorical question emerged. Throughout history, a desire for change has often led to radicalization rather than the reasoned thought needed for change to be successful. Sometimes the radical voices drown out reasoned ones and disaster occurs. Other times the reasoned voices prevail.
I had a chance encounter with an amazing 93 year old woman in the grocery store today. Her husband fought in WWII and Korea. She told me that they are horrified by the state of world affairs and especially with all the contention in the US. She stated that she just didn’t know how we would recover. I said the following
“We use the lessons learned from WWI and WWII – we work together.”
This sweet lady was momentarily stunned by my answer and then a huge grin formed on her face as she nodded.
“Yes,” she agreed, “we work together rather than try to stand alone.”
I have been pondering the connection between national defense and support for education. In a war between ideological enemies, support for education seems to have been very important. Yet education seems to be losing public support even though past wars have shown that an educated populace makes for a stronger society and better military force.
The following are two Pithyhistory posts that resulted from my ponderings.