Letter: Presidents Day about respect, honor, character

From: Robert Campbell


There was a time when America had great leadership. Next week we are celebrating Presidents Day in honor of our two most revered presidents: George Washington and Abraham Lincoln. They are considered that way because they helped to create and preserve the United States as a country.

If we were to examine the leadership qualities they had, it included honesty, integrity, compassion, the ability to listen and compromise. Both men were careful in their use of language, for both men knew that words can divide or unite people. Washington and Lincoln were both faithful men and honest in their dealings with others. Both men knew well the lessons of history, and that gave them perspective, judgment and wisdom in making their decisions.

They were not perfect men, but they did have the moral qualities that we should expect in all of our leaders at every level of government. They were both political men as all leaders must be, but they knew that politics is not a dirty word, a game or a means to personal economic gain. Most important to them was not satisfying a particular faction or interest group, but making sure that the greater good and greater community would be served first and foremost.

Both men were incredibly civil and respectful (even to their most fierce opponents), something that is in short supply currently. The character of these two presidents and the noble actions that derived from their character are what we should all celebrate, remember and expect.