Recently, former Congressman Paul Kanjorski wrote an op-ed in the New York Times in which he stated:
"We all lose an element of freedom when security considerations distance public officials from the people. Therefore, it is incumbent on all Americans to create an atmosphere of civility and respect in which political discourse can flow freely, without fear of violent confrontation. That is why the House speaker, John Boehner, spoke for everyone who has been in Congress when he said that an attack against one of us is an attack against all who serve. It is also an attack against all Americans. "
Now that's a fine statement and I agree with it, except that it reeks of hypocrisy which makes me cringe. This same ex-Congressman stated back in October, to the editorial board of the Scranton Times-Tribune:
Now I didn't vote for Rick Scott and I think he's a crook too but the point here is that you can't just run around making the statement you want to see someone shot and then three months later cry out against that kind of behavior while, singing "kumbaya" and calling for us all to work and play well with one another. Seriously, this guy is an idiot. Did he not think we would remember what he said in October? Thank God he's no longer in office but fear not, there are many more like him who are and whatt's worse is there are people (of all political persuasions) who keep voting for them.
"That Scott down there that's running for governor of Florida," Mr. Kanjorski said. "Instead of running for governor of Florida, they ought to have him and shoot him. Put him against the wall and shoot him. He stole billions of dollars from the United States government and he's running for governor of Florida. He's a millionaire and a billionaire. He's no hero. He's a damn crook. It's just we don't prosecute big crooks."
Having been called out recently for his hypocritical remarks, Kanjorski replied that people who took his statement about Scott literally are "fruitcakes". Ok let's say that's so, let's say that the real idiots are the people who thought his statement was wrong and in poor taste. Let's give Kanjorski a free pass because he's known for his "colorful language" (by his own admission). What about the recent remarks blaming Sarah Palin for the shootings in Tucson? Palin's website used scope targets on a map in an effort to show which areas Republicans needed to unseat Democrats. I'm no fan of Sarah Palin but really now but she didn't pull the trigger in Tucson any more than Kanjorski was endorsing the murder of Rick Scott.
But...as has been drilled into us forever....words have consequences, actions have consequences. And these stuffy, egocentric, loudmouth idiots whose only objective in office is power and not serving the people are not making things better, in fact they make things worse. They're the ones spreading the hate, discontent, negativity and hypocrisy. Does the philosophy "divide and conquer" ring a bell?
My philosophy differs. It goes something like this:
A good leader leads by example.
A good leader is honest.
A good leader has values.
A good leader has integrity and character.
A good leader practices what they preach.
A good leader admit their mistakes.
A good leader is first at the front line and the last to leave the battlefield.
A good leader never asks their followers to do anything they are not themselves willing to do.
When I see that with my own eyes, then I'll follow. Until then, I'm better off on my own. We all are.