By Jackie Finley
I’m no fan of Jeff Sessions. I disagree with him on many issues and find some of his conservative “let’s return to the old days” positions reprehensible.
President Trump’s most recent shaming of him, however, is beyond the pale, reflecting more on Trump’s own lack of character and integrity than on Session’s performance as Attorney General. Referring to Sessions as “Mr. Magoo,” and publicly calling him an idiot, is adolescence running amok. If Trump believes such abuse makes him look presidential and powerful, he is woefully disillusioned.
As Democrats, progressives, and liberals, we should find no humor in Trump’s belittling of Sessions, even if we dislike Sessions and his at-times reactionary stances on political and social issues. Leadership is more than just the authority to make or enforce laws; it is demonstrated through consistent displays of character that treat others, be they friends or foes, with respect. That we have a president with such abysmal behavior is pathetic, a sad commentary on how low our society has sunk.
As we continue through this election year, we must focus on electing local, state, and national candidates who show not only leadership skills, but strength of character as well. Public behavior is paramount to image; a strong, confident, and courteous countenance is part of the “package” of a leader who instills confidence in his or her constituents. If we follow a crass, thin-skinned, conceited “leader” who believes publicly belittling others shows strength and effectiveness, we are not going to progress very far.