Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Leading Lemmings

Although it has been shown to be untrue that the small Arctic rodents called lemmings commit mass suicide by blindly following a leader off of a cliff, such characterization has stuck and entered into popular culture as a description of those who follow blindly.  I think rather than calling people who exhibit such behavior lemmings, they should be called Zombies. 

Zombie is a term from Haitian witchcraft denoting one who was dead yet brought back to life by some mystical means.  The term is often used to describe a person who behaves as if hypnotized, but able to move about normally while appearing to have little or no self-awareness.  To me, this is a better description of those who follow blindly.

There are multiple types of leaders.  I would like to focus on two specifically; those who lead Zombies and those who lead the self-aware.  The former are what I would consider to be pseudo-leaders and the latter, true leaders.

Pseudo-leaders are common throughout the world.  The best example of them is a creature known as the politician.  Politicians speak soothing words designed to appeal to the unthinking masses.  They are often of the parasitical subspecies of mankind.  They tend to be manipulative and do nothing that is truly productive.  They live off of the productivity of others.

True leaders are motivators of self-aware and critical thinking people.  They typically have a strong vision of what they wish to accomplish.  Their gift is in sharing their vision with others in such a way that large numbers choose to contribute their skills and talents to the accomplishment of that vision.  Good examples of such leaders exist in the military and in private business.  People such as General George S. Patton and Steve Jobs come to mind.

At one time in the history of this country there were many true leaders sprinkled among the elected officials in our nation's capitol.  I fear that is no longer the case.  It is obvious to me that anyone who exercised independent thought and was fully self-aware would quickly reject the rhetoric coming from the halls of Congress or the White House. 

There must be an underlying reason that Washington has become so bereft of true leadership.  Perhaps it is a failure on the part of the American people to exercise their vote wisely.  Surely there are more self-aware, thinking people in this country than there are Zombies.  We need a true leader to step forward and motivate that majority.  It is time to replace the false with the real.

Tomorrow I will be at the halfway point of this alphabetic journey.  If you have suggestions for a subject beginning with the letter "M" I would appreciate you leaving a comment.


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