I usually avoid getting into political discussions because the extreme partisan positions of many people make it almost impossible to have a truly BALANCED discussion. Values-based leaders truly need to understand all sides of the story. I strongly believe the words of St. Francis who taught us to “seek to understand before we are understood.”

However, since I spend so much of my time teaching, researching, and reflecting on “values-based leadership,” the current situation in Washington with President Trump is something I can no longer avoid.

A friend sent me a link to an op-ed piece that John Brennan wrote in last Friday’s Washington Post. I have read it several times, and Mr. Brennan perfectly represents my view, even the title: I will speak out until integrity returns to the White House. John Brennan is not some left-wing partisan character. Far from it. He is a former director of the Central Intelligence Agency and has served under four presidents — both Republicans and Democrats — including George H.W. Bush, Bill Clinton, George W. Bush, and Barack Obama. If Mr. Brennan has any agenda other than being a person who cares deeply about our country, he definitely has me fooled.

I encourage you to read Mr. Brennan’s piece. A few of his comments really hit home for me:

“The impact of the Trump presidency will be felt for many years to come. Most worrisome is that his use of falsehoods, his mean-spirited and malicious behavior, and his self-absorption will be emulated by many young Americans — indeed, young people globally — who look to the president of the United States as a role model.”

As a professor teaching values-based leadership, this has me VERY concerned.

“My criticisms, however, are not political; I have never been and will never be a partisan. I speak out for the simple reason that Mr. Trump is failing to live up to the standards that we should all expect of a president.”

A person fortunate to be our President MUST live up to the standards….this is what being a values-based leader is all about, which President Trump surely is not.

Here again is the link to John Brennan’s op-ed: I will speak out until integrity returns to the White House

As always, I am interested in hearing your perspectives.


Feature Photo by Jerry Kiesewetter on Unsplash