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We Need a Leader, Not a Cheerleader

Updated: Apr 30, 2020

During this current crisis, it is more than vital to have a stable hand at the helm. So, why do we have a leader who refuses to lead? Why do we have a leader who thinks his role is to be the nation's cheerleader?

The coronavirus pandemic is uncharted territory for most Americans, since the last pandemic was over a century ago. America has endured many crises in its 200+ years of existence. There have been economic, political, social and yes, health crises that threatened to tear our country apart.

Each time, it was the person in charge who determined the outcome.

During the Civil War, the weakness of James Buchanan resulted in states ripping the country asunder. It was only the steady hand of Abraham Lincoln that led to the nation’s reunification after a long and bloody war.

Then there was Herbert Hoover, who failed to right the ship during the start of the Great Depression. Shanty huts called “Hoovervilles” arose around the country as thousands were thrown into the streets during this economic upheaval. It was only the New Deal policies of Franklin Roosevelt that rescued America from complete economic collapse.

After the attack on Pearl Harbor shook our nation, it was again Roosevelt who strongly urged calm as he ramped up military actions as America was drawn into World War II. His choice of Harry Truman as his Vice President for his fourth term was indeed prescient, as Truman, with his philosophy of “the buck stops here”, ended the war and led us into the post-war era of prosperity.

It was John F. Kennedy who, after an initial disaster, brought America back from the brink of the closest we have ever come to a nuclear confrontation during the Cuban Missile Crisis. Many have called this America’s finest hour.

After the Watergate Scandal toppled Richard Nixon, it was hoped that Gerald Ford could steady American jitters. He couldn’t. Yet, despite later fame as an elder statesman, Jimmy Carter also failed to unite America. It was only until Ronald Reagan, and his reputation as “the Great Communicator”, that Americans began to renew their faith in the political system.

Despite an administration plagued with scandals, which led to his impeachment , Bill Clinton was able to lead America into an era of economic prosperity.

It was George W. Bush’s calm resolve that healed America after the 9/11 attacks. What he excelled in as a unifier, he sorely lacked in economic policies, as his tactics resulted in the Great Recession.

It was this economic disaster that Barack Obama inherited. His careful guidance resulted in an 11-year economic boon. This is something the current administration denies he deserves credit for accomplishing.

That brings us to our current administration. Trump’s response to the Coronavirus pandemic, his refusal to accept responsibility, and his denial of the facts are still being felt; the true story may not be known for years. Instead, he claims he wants to be that cheerleader; only pointing out the positive things that his administration has done while ignoring the facts of its failings.

History has shown us that, during times of crisis, we need a strong leader. Sadly, we are missing that today.

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