Tuesday, January 15, 2008

True Leadership

Martin Luther King famously said;
I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character.

Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D. C., on August 28, 1963
Why have we forgotten this simple measure, to look beyond a persons skin and see, as well as you can, their character? I have always believed that you should always credit a the other person with honest motives and if you disagree as honest people can, attack the validity of their views, not their integrity.

I am disappointed to observe that we seldom have debates in our political system. We now have contests where no advantage is too small and no trick is too dirty. The personal has displaced the principle.

A few years later as Dr. King moved from racial equity to economic equity as his primary focus he said;
If a man is called to be a streetsweeper, he should sweep streets even as Michelangelo painted, or Beethoven composed music, or Shakespeare wrote poetry. He should sweep streets so well that all the host of heaven and earth will pause to say, here lived a great streetsweeper who did his job well.

Barratt Junior High School in Philadelphia on October 26, 1967
Where are the true leaders today? We need them to step forward.

1 comment:

Cinnacism said...

As I cope with having left New Orleans to attend grad school in Texas, I have been gratified to find your blog. It's really interesting and I hope you continue for the entire fivfe years that I am gone from the city. I'm not a native, but it was the first place that felt like home after twenty-five years of moving. One of my goals is to understand New Orleans nearly as well as those who've been there all along. I think your blog will help me with that. Thanks.