One Politician’s Problem

A few weeks ago, I was reading and studying in Hardee’s (where else?). I was preparing for a talk I needed to give at an upcoming conference, when he walked over and started talking with me.

I thought I was just going to get to know an Allendale resident wanted to chat, so I invited him to sit across from me in my booth.

But I was wrong about his purpose. He is running for an office. So, instead of learning about someone’s story, I got 45 minutes of this-is-what’s-wrong-with-my-opponent-and-his-political-party.

I was thrilled. #sarcasm

As I nursed my coffee, he lamented how he couldn’t get local support, so I asked which community leaders he had connected with. (The title of my talk was “How to Connect with Your Community’s Gatekeepers,” so these questions were fresh on my mind.) He mentioned a couple of people whom he said supported him, but neither of which I knew to be involved in the community.

That’s when it hit me. Although this man said that he was wanting to be elected so he could bring about changes in the political system, what he really wanted was to just get elected. If he truly wanted to serve the residents of Allendale, he would have already been doing it. (See, for example, what Lottie Lewis has been doing to Make Hope a Reality.)

Wanting to get back to my studying, I decided to just lay my feelings out for him, over the next 10 minutes. Here’s the recap:

Do you want to know what’s wrong with most of the Democratic party? They want to depend on the government as the rescuer and cure-all. And they want to minimize accountability.

Do you want to know what’s wrong with most Republicans? The want accountability without seeking to understand and without having a caring relationship. And they minimize the good things that government has done.

(I left out a lot, in the hopes that I don’t completely lose you as a financial supporter sound like a maniac.)

Having thoroughly offended him (how’s that for “Connecting with Your Community’s Gatekeepers”?), he left my booth, and I was finally able to refill my coffee.

And, in case you’re wondering, I have NOT read How to Win Friends and Influence People.

Related Links:

**image courtesy of DonkeyHotey via flickr

Tags: ,

2 responses to “One Politician’s Problem”

  1. krista says :

    That actually is the best, most concise statement I’ve read on the political parties. I’m sure you planted a seed of service and giving, which hopefully will grow at some point!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: