Promotion to General: A colleague of mine told of his first day after being promoted to Brigadier General (1 star). All of the new General Officers were gathered for their orientation into the elite club called General Officers. The Chief of Staff of the Army entered the room and after the customary respect of coming to attention and then being seated was completed he spoke to them.
You are Replaceable: The Chief of Staff asked them to look around the room at all of their fellow Generals. He then told them; Generals, if a bomb landed on this room and we were all killed instantly the Army would not even miss a beat. He told them they were chosen among many others who were equally qualified and ready to assume the rank of General Officer. In the Army culture everyone is replaceable. Could the Army work any other way? They all knew and understood they were appointed to serve and to lead, and to do so selflessly. Should they be unable to do this they would be expected to resign and if they did not resign they would be replaced. Simple concept…”be good and do good”.
Election to Congress: Like you I have a mix of feelings as I watch the news reports on the growing number of sexual abuses being levied toward some of our political leaders. I realize to make comparisons between military and political cultures is, by the it’s very nature, contradictory. There is, however, some common ground on the fundamental basics of leadership. After all, our Congresspersons and Senators are elected to be leaders, first and foremost.
You are Replaceable: I refuse to join sides in the battle over who has the most abusers, the Republicans or the Democrats. The numbers could grow to an absurd level….. should the flood gates open. The Press misses the point, as usual, and are asking the wrong questions because they have their own political agendas. The message to all of our political leaders should be the same one the Chief of Staff of the Army gives to the new class of General Officers. “You are replaceable”. If you cannot lead get out of the way or we will take you out of the way….there are so many equally ready and qualified who can step up and get the job done. You are elected to lead, to do the peoples business, to legislate, and help our country to grow and prosper, to represent those who trusted you with their vote to send you to Washington as their representatives. Such a great honor, such a great responsibility!
There is No Shortage: To all our political leaders I would simply ask that if your whole time is spent, or if elected, will be spent, defending accusations due to questionable or even clear cut egregious sexual behaviors you should drop from the race, and or resign your seat. You are replaceable, you are not the only citizen who can do the important work of legislating. There are many equally qualified and ready. Republican or Democrat it is the same thing, get out of the way. To do anything else is to put yourself first, and that is the very opposite of selfless leadership. Simple concept….“be good and do good”.