Our world today is lacking leaders with true moral conviction, and people are feeling scared. Now is the time to look for real compassion, empathy and goodness in the leaders we elect.
Mahatma Gandhi, Nelson Mandela and John F Kennedy were all great leaders throughout past decades. There’s nobody like those men anymore.
Today, we are left with frightening political candidates like Donald Trump, Clive Palmer and dud religious leaders like Cardinal Pell.
Using non-violent principles, Gandhi helped lead India to independence from British rule. “An eye for eye only ends up making the whole world blind”, was his most famous quote.
Nelson Mandela overcame racism and apartheid to give black people a voice within South Africa. Mandela believed, “education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world”.
Over in America, John F Kennedy became a great President when he spoke about the need of all people to become active and responsible citizens.
“Ask not what your country can do for you – ask what you can do for your country”, JFK famously said in his first speech as president.
He wanted the “common enemies of man” such as “tyranny, poverty, disease, and war itself” overcome, but unfortunately JFK did not live long enough to achieve this vision.
Some people would argue that Prime Minister John Howard was a great Australian leader – but I don’t know whether his humanitarian record matches that of Gandhi, Mandela or JFK.
In fact, John Howard still claims his “stop the boats” type border control was his greatest success, despite Australia having ongoing problems with asylum seekers today.
In 2016, we are left with weak political candidates like Donald Trump, Clive Palmer and controversial religious leaders like Cardinal Pell.
Donald Trump has a limited tolerance for other cultures. He has previously talked about conflicts in the Middle East, saying “Let them fight each other and pick up the remnants.”
Meanwhile, Clive Palmer’s companies have run into the ground and hundreds of Aussie workers have lost their jobs. Despite this, Clive keeps up appearances as a “millionaire entrepreneur”.
Cardinal Pell is perhaps my least favourite of this bunch. He should have stepped down years ago when Catholic child abuse allegations surfaced, and yet he has consistently “washed his hands” of any particular wrong-doing.
The situation surrounding Cardinal Pell is yet to be resolved. As a religious leader though, I think he has failed his community and countless children too. Pope Francis should do more than just offer “words of comfort” to abuse victims as well.
Unfortunately in 2016, it looks like we’re entering the “dark ages” when it comes to world leaders. At least that’s my take anyway.