Monday, September 05, 2005

Leadership

Like most Americans, I've been watching a lot of news lately. Like everyone else, I've wondered what exactly I should do about this tragedy in the Gulf Coast. I have felt that most people desperately want to help, but just don't know how.

At times like these we want leadership that will take charge of the situation and assure us that everything is going to be ok. I have seen several interviews with our president, and have not been convinced that he thinks everything is going to be ok. I don't want that to sound too harsh. I can't imagine being in his shoes at this point, and believe that this would be difficult for any person. Further, no one could have predicted that this would happen. Most people do not know how to respond, but true leaders should. They may get a few things wrong, but they will continue to make decisions, because during times like these it is essential that decisions be made. I remember after 9/11 that Rudy Giuliani showed himself to be a true leader. When tragedy struck, he responded. He made decisions. He reassured the people. The following is taken from a Time Magazine article, in which he was named Person of the Year in 2001.

Sixteen hours had passed since the Twin Towers crumbled and fell, and people kept telling Rudy Giuliani to get some rest. The indomitable mayor of New York City had spent the day and night holding his town together. He arrived at the World Trade Center just after the second plane hit, watched human beings drop from the sky and--when the south tower imploded--nearly got trapped inside his makeshift command center near the site. Then he led a battered platoon of city officials, reporters and civilians north through the blizzard of ash and smoke, and a detective jimmied open the door to a firehouse so the mayor could revive his government there. Giuliani took to the airwaves to calm and reassure his people, made a few hundred rapid-fire decisions about the security and rescue operations, toured hospitals to comfort the families of the missing and made four more visits to the apocalyptic attack scene.

I don't feel that we've seen this type of leadership from our top levels of government this past week, and I believe that this has in turn hindered our relief efforts. With leadership comes great responsibility. Fortunately we have seen great leadership during this time. Alabama governor Bob Riley's "Operation Golden Rule" is a detailed plan to help those who have lost homes due to Hurricane Katrina.

We've also seen numerous citizens inspired to be creative in finding ways to help. On Saturday I was watching Wolf Blitzer, and he read a few emails from people with some really great ideas. One of those was a man from Salem, N.C., who wrote saying that all of the churches in his town had come together to adopt a town in Southern Mississippi. Can you imagine what they will be able to accomplish? Or the lives that will impacted through their imagination and cooperation? This kind of creativity is to be applauded, as well as copied. It's exciting to see churches working together, and we have a wonderful opportunity to change our image here in America.

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

hmm...

curiously, that is almost word-for-word what Fox News reporter Shepherd Smith said on The Late Show with David Letterman last night.

Robert said...

I guess that means I should be on tv. I promise I didn't plagiarize.

zionred said...

You're right. There really hasn't been a strong leader to stand up in the midst of this tragedy. It would have been a perfect opportunity for the mayor of NEw Orleans to become the hero of the day. However, he's content on just pointing his finger at everyone else and allocating blame. In reality, his finger should be pointing back straight at himself.

Thank God we have a president like Mr. Bush who has been doing everything within his power to help out with the relief effort.