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LETTER: America desperately needs real leadership

Thomas Sowell’s Aug. 8 column reminded me of the severe leadership crisis that is plaguing our divided nation. Let me count some of the ways.

The rise (and fall) of an unconventional president has clearly discombobulated the Republican Party. Can’t we treat him — and each other — as something other than evil or totally untrustworthy? Or celebrate his accomplishments without treating him as a god? Blind leadership is not what this country needs.

And how about those Democratic leaders who have concluded that the best chance of winning may be by spending big bucks to ensure the weakest election opponents? Or Speaker Nancy Pelosi appointing all the members of the Jan. 6 committee, making certain that every one is virulently anti-Trump? Authoritarian leadership is not what we need either.

It is sad that persuasion in the political sphere may be, for the most part, a lost art. I hope that we will occasionally ponder the leadership of an FDR or a Ronald Reagan: gutsy, persuasive and, at the same time, reassuring. But every time I hear that one of our leaders has closed his or her mind, accusing opponents of being unworthy in unprecedented hyperbole (even hatred), I shudder.

I know the following is a cliché, but I feel an irresistible urge to repeat it: Leaders should lead, not just say what they think their followers want to hear. A lazy, uncompromising, unhinged approach appears to be producing few constructive results.

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