A timely note about ethical political leadership

“No other type of ruler is so transparent about prioritizing self-preservation over the public good, and so lacking in the human qualities that define ethical leadership — the ability to feel empathy for others and act on their behalf. As one country after another has discovered, the strongman is at his worst as a leader when he is most needed by his country.

There are two paths people can take when faced with the proliferation of polarization and hatred in their societies. They can dig their trenches deeper or they can reach across the lines to stop a new cycle of destruction, knowing that solidarity, love and dialogue are what the strongman most fears. History shows the importance of keeping hope and faith in humanity and of supporting those who struggle for freedom in our own time. We can carry with us the stories of those who lived and died over a century of democracy’s destruction and resurrection. They are precious counsel for us today.”

Historian Ruth Ben-Ghiat

from Strongmen, by Ruth Ben-Ghiat

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