As our country faces economic challenges and continued political disarray, the call for leadership can be heard from the board rooms of America to the cabinet room of The White House. The call for leadership rings loud and clear from the street vendor to Wall Street.
When leadership is summoned, it must answer the call in a variety of forms. Leadership must arrive to answer the calls with answers to tough questions. It must be prepared to make tough, sometimes unpopular decisions, and it must recognize conscience as its greatest tool.
As the politics of party overshadows the priority of people, we see a decrease in the value of leadership. We see a lack of leadership in an era when it is most needed.
The cause of this void can be traced to its roots. It has always been my firm belief that all government, all security and all terrorism begins in the home. Our homes are a cultural and political entity all unto themselves. Each unique and each defined by its leadership. Some homes are dictatorships, while others are subjected to terror and violence. Some are democratic, where each member of the family has a responsibility in how that home is sustained. Each has a system of values and rules by which it governs, while others lack any values at all, witnessing an eventual breakdown in the family structure. As all leadership begins in the home, so too does it reflect upon our communities, our local, state and federal governments. It pours itself from the home into the board rooms of our companies and into the places of worship and faith where we seek our inner peace.
Leadership is the missing link in our current era. While Wall Street is pleading for help from a government to lead in the current crisis, both Wall Street and government alike lack the leadership to make the tough decisions to solve the abyss of economic uncertainty. As politicians talk of sympathy to the American family who has been displaced from their homes or the worker who has lost his job, I have yet to witness leadership. Someone, somewhere needs to explain the merits of fiscal responsibility. We need to get back to the common sense value of hard work and the tough reality that families, companies and governments, can not live beyond their means. It is necessary to trim costs, cut back and make sacrifices. Why then are multi-billion dollar corporations and Americans alike holding out their hands with the expectation of something from the government?
Let`s go back to the home for a moment. Our children have certain responsibilities that are all their own. They do some things that we reward with an allowance. We expect our children to do certain things that are their responsibilities to do. When they don`t, there are consequences.
The same is applied to the American people and American business. We are expected to maintain our responsibilities. When we work, we get paid and we have a budget from which to work. I have heard some suggest that credit is the undoing of the economic condition of the American family. While credit has been a symptom, it is not the cause of the disease. The cause is irresponsibility and living beyond one`s means. It is how the government has operated for years...spending money it simply doesn`t have and then trying to find a way to pay for it.
Leadership requires responsibility, sacrifice and a steady hand. It requires tough decisions for tough times and the truth about the ills of our nation.
When the government asks the American people, "how did you get into this financial mess", the people should reply like a child to its parent: "We got into this mess by watching you".
Let us take the responsibility of leadership upon our own shoulders. Let us stop looking to Washington or Wall Street for leadership and realize that in doing so we lose a fundamental truth about ourselves; that we know how to govern our lives, our families and our businesses better than the politicians on Capitol Hill.
Let us answer the call for leadership and empower ourselves while the "experts" sort out their own perpetual mess.
-Will Griffith, Chairman of the Board
THE GRIFFITH CORPORATION
INTERNATIONAL HUMAN RIGHTS TRIBUNAL