Pundits and politicians
Millions of Americans have lost their jobs, their homes, and their savings in the recession while the bosses of Wall Street continue to enjoy generous compensation packages. Politicians, all too anxious to feed the 24-hour news cycle, fling heated words that seem designed to appeal to the extreme wings of their parties. The recent death of Walter Cronkite, the CBS anchorman known as "the most trusted man in America," provided a stark reminder of the low esteem in which many members of the media are held these days.
Is it any wonder that the average American perceives a lack of leadership within our country's foremost institutions? He looks at our society and sees a circus. He feels he has been left alone to deal with his worries about his job and his house and how he's going to send his children to college.
The military, on the other hand, continues to be an object of national respect. We turn to the members of the armed forces for leadership because we view them as our protectors. They defend our freedom, and they produce results. In fulfilling their duties, they endure both physical and psychological hardship, often in the face of death. We hail them for their uncommon vigilance and bravery.
Our military also has been the source of some of the greatest American leaders, from Washington to Eisenhower to Powell. All of these former generals were able to make the transition to the political arena because of their training and experience, and because the public admired and trusted them to such a great degree.
Men and women such as these teach us the important lessons of sacrifice, working for the greater good, and working for a long-term goal. We know that the Wall Street barons and the polarizing politicians and the shouting cable pundits do not represent the best of this nation. For that, we can look to the men and women in uniform who put themselves in harm's way -- every day, all over the world -- for the benefit and safety of other people.
Posted by: therapy | November 3, 2009 1:39 PM
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