BOSTON (CBS) — When we say we want strong leaders, what do we mean?
I always thought that meant someone with convictions who could rally you behind them, a persuader, someone you admire and respect for their exceptional qualities.
But like everything else in our beloved country, different folks have different ideas of what a strong leader is.
Conservative Wall Street Journal columnist Peggy Noonan doesn’t sugarcoat it in her latest column describing the leader she sees in the White House.
She picks up on the president’s cringe-worthy speech to the Boy Scouts the other day and writes: “Why should he inspire them, show personal height, weight and dignity, support our frail institutions? He has needs and wants—he is angry!—which supersede pesky, long-term objectives. Why put the amorphous hopes of the audience ahead of his own, more urgent needs? His inability—not his refusal, but his inability—to embrace the public and rhetorical role of the presidency consistently and constructively is weak.”
Ouch, that smarts!
Even worse, she likens Trump to an unfunny character in a Woody Allen movie, where they “couldn’t stop talking about their emotions, their resentments and needs. They were self-justifying as they acted out their cowardice and anger.”
Luckily, we don’t need to look to Washington, New York or Hollywood to find role models of real strength.
If you’re lucky, they’re right at hand, fathers and big brothers and teachers, policemen and firemen.
And, of course, ultra-strong female role models. In my house growing up, we called her “mom.”
I understand Peggy Noonan’s dismay.
My advice to her and others who feel the same despair – turn off the TV, and look out the window.
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