What to Make of Trump’s Election

November 9, 2016

A friend writes this morning  “just wondering what your Quaker Friends are saying after this election?  I write her back:

trump-headlineWell I’m wondering, too, what Quakers make of it and wondering even more what I make of it. “Shocked” seems to be the word of the day, and that certainly includes me.
Two thoughts come first to my mind.  One is that anytime we are surprised by the doings of others we live among (and it’s all those votes that have me reeling, not DJT’s election) — anytime that happens, then that’s on us.  We weren’t paying attention the way we should have been.  We’ve got to pay attention better, listen and look better, open our heads and hearts a little wider.
The other thought has to do with something I said to Robbie yesterday and now am saying to myself.  He was hoping for a leadership position in his scout troop he didn’t get and so is disappointed.  I told him leadership isn’t so much about the position you hold, it’s about what you do, how you carry yourself.  In seeing it that way, I told him, “leadership is taking initiative generously, constructively and persistently.”  Anyone can exercise leadership on that understanding and at any time.  So this morning I’m thinking we better all step up to leadership, taking initiative generously, constructively and persistently.
What initiative(s)?  That’s what I’m thinking about.
Love to hear your thoughts.



About Doug Bennett

Doug Bennett is Emeritus President and Professor of Politics at Earlham College. He has a wife, Ellen, and two sons, Tommy (born 1984) and Robbie (born 2003).
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