Saturday, January 21, 2017

Road to Character Took a Detour

I recently finished the book, Road to Character written by David Brooks.  I started reading it after the election and finished it before the inauguration of our 45th President.  There was not a moment during the reading of this deep, philosophical book about people with strong moral character, that I didn't think, "How did this man become our President?"

Politics aside, seriously, politics aside, I want to talk about the man.

Character is learned, it is cultivated, it provokes moral dilemmas and it is the difference in a human between self-love and narcissism and a diligent, methodical and conscious effort to be a person of character. defines character as a:

  • Moral or ethical quality
  • Quality of honesty, courage or the like; integrity
  • Reputation
As the past few months unfolded I questioned the character, the integrity of all the candidates.  But President 45 stood out above the rest.  The rest to me simply lacked strength of good character.  I think for the most part the others were deep down inside probably decent people, caught up in the self-aggrandizing that is a political election.  Let's call a spade a spade....elections seem to bring out the worst in all people running.  

David Brooks describes people with character, 

"They radiate a sort of moral joy.  They answer softly when challenged harshly.  They are silent when unfairly abused.  They are dignified when others try to humiliate them, restrained when others provoke them.  But they get things done.  They perform acts of sacrificial service with the same modest everyday spirit they would display if they were just getting the groceries.  They are both thinking about what impressive work they are doing."

Not many candidates exemplified character.  President 45 took it to a whole new level.  Everything I write will be written from a researched, fact based, position.  Of course my personal opinion is evident but unlike the inaccurate social media world I will only deal in facts.

President 45 radiates a aura of "better than" a "disdain for others".  His tweets are all we really need to confirm this.  

“Happy New Year to all, including to my many enemies and those who have fought me and lost so badly they just don’t know what to do. Love!”
“Ariana Huffington is unattractive, both inside and out. I fully understand why her former husband left her for a man – he made a good decision.”

 “Meryl Streep, one of the most over-rated actresses in Hollywood, doesn’t know me but attacked last night at the Golden Globes. She is a Hillary flunky who lost big. For the 100th time, I never “mocked” a disabled reporter (would never do that) but simply showed him “groveling” when he totally changed a 16 year old story that he had written in order to make me look bad. Just more very dishonest media!” 

....and he's just mean.  If you want to read more....just the facts.

This election for me was about character or lack thereof.  I have voted for every Republican Presidential candidate since I was old enough to vote.  Until 45.  

If I, as a pretty much die hard Republican, saw the lack of character and the damage potential how could others not?  I am still grappling with that question and I do not think I will ever come to terms with it.

Character and integrity is everything to me.  As people "explained" away 45's behavior I sat stunned, in shock.  

"It's just words...."

"He didn't really mean it."

"It's just boy talk."  

"Locker room talk."

Okay, if my "boy" or "boys" talked like that I would eliminate them from my life.  

Those are not just words...all of his is an stark indication of his lack of Character.

People don't change, not at 70.  He is who he is.  He was elected by people looking for change.  I get that, but he's not the change maker you were promised.  Because in the end, his lack of character justifies all his decisions and will continue to do so for the next 4 years.

45 lies...all the time 

 “I will build a great wall – and nobody builds walls better than me, believe me – and I’ll build them very inexpensively. I will build a great, great wall on our southern border, and I will make Mexico pay for that wall. Mark my words.” 

The former President of Mexico, Vincente Fox Quesada has seen through the half truths and outright lies.  He calls out his Character:

I think one of the most difficult things to see unfold is the Cabinet.  When 45 was elected I prayed....after my severe crisis of faith....maybe, just maybe he would surround himself with good people who really would take care of the country.  

45, in documented lie after lie, says he has the "smartest" Cabinet in the history of Presidential Cabinets.

Truth:  45's cabinet has the least amount of academic degrees ever.  Only 1/3 hold bachelor degrees, 40% have a law or medical degree and no one holds a doctorate. Betsy DeVos, billionaire, who has no experience in Education, accept for turning a profit, is one of the most glaring examples of inexperience.  She could not even answer the most basic of questions, proficiency versus growth.  And guns in schools in Wyoming for bears?  But here's the real damage she has done in her own state.   

Why did Betsy DeVos get the nomination?  5.3 MILLION Reasons.  #Draintheswamp...not so much.  There is not even ONE Hispanic in the Cabinet.  93% of the Cabinet is white that a reflection of our country?  

Why do I talk about this when I'm talking about 45's character?  He told us all one thing and we get completely another.  Why are we taking this?  

The irony of this week being not only Martin Luther King Jr.'s birthday, but also the transition of power from our first black President to another white man is not lost of me.  King was a man of character who changed our world forever.  As 45 tries time and again to suppress the media, unless it's media he wants whether true or false, I'm struck that we are slowly losing rights.  It is a slippery slope.  Now more than ever we need to speak up, speak out, with dignity and integrity.  

Scot McKay defines lack of character as, 

"Anyone who is blatantly narcissistic or psychopathic, has a hair-trigger temper, gets their jollies from swindling people, lies even when the truth is obviously short on character."

Am I missing something?  

"But, Kim, he's a good businessman."

"Really???  That's not what Newsweek reports."

No offense....I think Newsweek's fact check department is a bit better than your Uncle Beauregard's.   

45 is our President, it is what it is.  I pray we're not part of the American Titantic.  I do not want colossal failure on his behalf or for the country, however, I will not stand idly by.  I will call out his lack of character, lack of transparency or simply his lack of common decency.  

45 is not a man of good moral character, nor will he ever be.  

Of all the incredibly disheartening, stomach churning, deceitful things 45 has done, yesterday at the inauguration there was a moment when I truly grasped, there is no hope.  We must ride out these next four years and I pray, it will shake us all up to make a change not just for change sake, but a change, a moral decision to elect a President with character.

Bob and Elizabeth Dole are Republican Royalty, they have given their lives serving this country.  Bob Dole fought in World War II and devoted his life to serving the people of Kansas.  He's now 93 and in a wheel chair.  45 won as a Republican yet it was Obama, a Democrat, who gave Mr. Dole and his wife the well deserved honor and respect he has earned for a lifetime of service to this country.

I never voted for Obama, but I always respected him as a man of character.  

Thank you President Obama for just doing the right thing.  

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