President Obama spoke eloquently today about the poor in this country — and it is deplorable that we have so many poor with no opportunity. It is getting worse and worse each year. It pains me that people suffer. We are good people with big hearts and we all would like to see the WAR ON POVERTY (started in 1965) won – not just talked about – and people having opportunities. But…how about those AT THE TOP setting an example ? Setting examples inspires others to pitch in, join in. And President Obama is at that top! We need him to lead on this.
Here is an idea: instead of taking Air Force 1 and hundreds of staffers to Hawaii this holiday season costing millions and millions of taxpayer dollars, the President should do something big and set that example. This is an emergency. He should stay home in DC, figure out how much money is saved by staying home, and do something in the community. Use those millions saved to create a local job training program or some other real project that has real impact on lives. That would really help! Not only would it help, it might inspire others to likewise make sacrifices and help. It would be a simple gesture by the President that could speak volumes – and would inspire many.
Example has to start at the top or it is just blah blah blah talk and no product. You can’t believe a talker — and they do not inspire. But you can believe a doer. A doer produces evidence of really caring – a talker can sometimes just hoodwink. Set a REAL example so I know I can believe you.
And you can’t tell everyone else this is a serious problem and we have to fix it and it is the right thing to do and the moral thing to do….and then go on vacation and make no sacrifice yourself. That is not leadership. It is also just about the worse message. If you want to send the right message, inspire others, have us believe in you, you need to roll up your sleeves and make a sacrifice. In other words, show us.
And if President Obama sets that example, maybe everyone else will pitch in, too. Maybe Congress? Maybe the rest of us? That is what it will take.
PS I know some are saying: he should get a vacation and that every President takes them. This is true. Every President did. But don’t you think President Obama might want his legacy to be different? Would you not think he would be proud of a legacy which was that he took the lead, that he inspired, and that his legacy was not just all talk and what he expected of others and not himself?
One other thing…President Obama is not the reason for decades of poverty in this country…but he does have the chance to change the course of history. He can either dazzle some with empty words — or he can inspire with example.
Actually one other thing….since poverty is growing, it is proof positive that whatever we are doing to combat poverty and create opportunity is not working so we need to revamp, rethink and create an entirely new strategy.