The following remarks were made by “Mary Elizabeth” on a journalist’s blog from the Atlanta Journal-Constitution on November 2, 2012. The post explores what authentic strength entails.
“Portraying oneself as ‘principled without engaging in compromise’ has never been real strength, only a kind of caricatured performance of what strength is. It is interesting that that kind of outward ‘strength’ bluster – valued and overtly displayed by George W. Bush – is what has gathered many supporters within the Republican Party.
Barack Obama, Joe Biden, and Hillary Clinton have authentic strength because their strength springs from their inner resources. At least half of the nation’s population can see that. My hope is that, as time evolves, more Americans will expand their awareness of what genuine strength entails. Mother Theresa had authentic strength although she was a small, fragile, older woman who preferred deeds to words. Pilot C. B. ‘Sully’ Sullenberger, who landed safely his crippled airplane on the Hudson River a couple of years ago, thereby saving his crew and passengers, had authentic strength. George Washington, who had an aversion to partisan politics, embodied such genuine strength that he carried the weight of winning the Revolutionary War on his shoulders for eight years. Washington would have been executed as a traitor to Britain had he lost that war against the formidable and outnumbered British navy and army. After he had led others in winning that war, and after he had been hailed throughout the nation and world for his fortitude and character, Gen.Washington laid down his power to return to civilian life. The Father of Our Country modeled genuine strength, and the value of the ‘servant leader,’ for his peers and for leaders of future generations.
My prayer is that that half of this nation who still see the bluster of not compromising with others – either at home or abroad – as strength will come to understand what genuine strength entails and will recognize that intransigence is rarely strength, only weakness disguised as strength.”