Many of you have more than likely seen the movie, “Remember the Titans.” Those of you who have seen it remember the movie for the end result- the unlikely coming together of teammates; but more importantly, of human beings. It is an amazing true story.
There is a particular exchange between characters in the movie that remains imprinted on my mind to this day. Julius, a black student, and Gerry, a white student (the team’s captain), are forced by their coach to sit down and learn about each other in the hopes that bonding between teammates would help to topple the wall of color that divided the team. Words get heated for a moment as the two argue about each others’ actions and responsibilities on the field. Gerry reprimands Julius for what he perceives to be a poor attitude. Julius responds simply, “attitude reflects leadership. . . captain.”
Each individual is, at the end of the day, responsible for his or her own actions. To blame a superior for every action of a subordinate is simply ludicrous. However, each of us in our own inherent sinfulness and selfish ways is more likely to take the road most traveled (in very non Robert Frost-esque fashion); that is, to take the easy way in life. Therefore, if a superior does little to curb this behavior and even less to promote hard work and ethical behavior, one can expect certain lack-luster or even shameful results from the subordinates.
I’m speaking of recent national scandals including but certainly not limited to: the shameful carrying on of GSA officials and employees, the absolutely reprehensible behavior of certain Secret Service members in Cartagena, Colombia, the administration’s reaction (lack thereof) to the horrendous behavior of the New Black Panther Party and other racially-charged protests in light of the tragic Trayvon Martin shooting, and the recent Project Veritas exposure of painfully obvious voter fraud in Washington D.C.
GSA employees partied it up in Las Vegas, and then made videos mocking other exploits on the taxpayer’s dime. The Secret Service, (arguably one of the most elite protection services IN THE WORLD) whose day-to-day responsibilities include protecting the most powerful office on the planet, found itself with certain members who hired prostitutes while in Colombia with the president. Then, of course, there are the members the New Black Panther Party (this is the same group that intimidated voters in PA; the same group that Attorney General Eric Holder refused to prosecute) which spewed racial epitaphs and violent threats that included a bounty set on George Zimmerman. . .and the president responds with “If I had had a son, he would have looked like Trayvon Martin”? Finally, in Washington D.C. within Attorney General Eric Holder’s own precinct, a young (white, I might add) man was able to waltz in to a polling station, claim he was Eric Holder, and the the poll worker couldn’t have cared less about whether or not the young man could produce an ID proving he was who he said he was before handing him a ballot. The list goes on for miles. (By the way, it’s been Eric Holder himself who has fought Voter ID extensively. . . how ironic! But that’s another story.)
Is the president and his administration entirely responsible for the GSA Vegas bash and subsequent videos, the Secret Service prostitutes, the bounty set on George Zimmerman, and the irresponsible polling station worker? Of course not. But the president and his administration make appointments to leadership positions within such entities as the GSA and the Secret Service and supervise those leadership roles even if they haven’t made the initial appointments. In the Zimmerman/Martin case, if the President chose to interject himself in the fray, it should have been to reprimand the behavior of the riotous NBPP, and not to further exploit the racial divide as he did. In the case of the D.C. voter fraud, he and his administration have spent quite a bit of time and money fighting voter ID on the fallacious argument that it is racially charged. . .meanwhile no attention is given to the fact that that D.C. polling station is just one of thousands upon thousands across the country, and that D.C. polling station worker’s attitude is indeed not an anomaly.
It’s very simple.
Attitude reflects leadership. . . Mr. President.