Ashland Hawk Editorial – Qualities of Leadership, Part II

Let us state this argument once again:

We believe that “Leadership” is missing among Washington politicians….politicians of both parties. Abraham Lincoln and Theodore Roosevelt, both Republicans (in a different era), provided strong leadership during crisis. Franklin Roosevelt and Lyndon Johnson, Democrats, were great leaders when their moment arrived. These men were fallible but they stood tall when the nation was in need.

Where and who are the men and women capable today of unflinching ethical leadership?

This is the second editorial in a series of editorials about the qualities of leadership. We hope these editorials will cause you ,as best you can, to evaluate leadership when you support candidates and cast your vote in November 2020. November 2020 is 21 months away but the presidential candidates will be determined in about 15 months at the two parties’ national conventions. Time is actually short.

It is easy to confuse integrity and honesty. One working definition: According to the dictionary, honesty is “truthfulness, sincerity, or frankness; freedom from deceit or fraud.” Integrity is “adherence to moral and ethical principles; soundness of moral character; honesty.” … You can have honesty without integrity, but you cannot have integrity without honesty.

Your feedback and criticism of these editorials will be greatly appreciated.

Ragan Phillips

Editor/The Ashland Hawk


The 34th President of United States, Dwight D. Eisenhower once said, “The supreme quality for leadership is unquestionably integrity. Without it, no real success is possible, no matter whether it is on a section gang, a football field, in an army, or in an office.”

It is integrity that is the foundation of all leadership qualities. If people do not trust you and your words they are not going to accept you as a leader.

The 45th President of the United States, Donald J. Trump, recently told about 100 uniformed troops at Al Asad Air Base in Iraq said, “You haven’t gotten one [pay raise] in more than 10 years — more than 10 years. And we got you a big one. I got you a big one.”

Trump earlier told the same story to the 2018 graduating class at the U. S. Naval Academy.

In fact, the military has received steady pay increases for decades. Troops have received a pay raise every year for the last 35 years (the average since 2008 is 2.12%), and nearly every year since 1945. President Trump’s words are simply not true.

The President is the Commander-in-Chief of our all of our military forces, from four star officers to first day recruits. Misrepresenting the truth about pay raises is hardly a global disaster.But men and women in uniform will, eventually, see the falsehood in Trump’s remarks.Those men and women, standing in harm’s way, absolutely deserve to hear the truth, not political gibberish from their Commander-in Chief. In fact, the entire nation expects the truth, and nothing but the truth, from the President.. .

As for Congress,we do believe very many speak outright lies on a daily basis. But almost all politicians shade or evade the truth in order to win over constituents in their district or state. A recent Gallup Poll revealed that only eleven percent (11%) of Americans had strong confidence in the Congress. This step away from integrity, evasion, effects local politicians as well.

.For example, in bed-rock fiscally conservative Hanover County, Virginia (median annual family income of $88,000), politicians do not speak about the much needed increase in property taxes (currently, and for the last decade, at 81 mills per $100 assessed value) to increase funding for public schools.. New funds are long overdue in order to provide adequate pay for classroom teachers and to replace aging, unsafe 75 year old public schools. Nothing in our society is more important that a quality education for every child, pre-k through high school.

Whether it is marriage,a business partnership or words from the President of the United States, integrity matters.

“No matter how educated, talented, rich or cool you believe you are, how you treat people ultimately tells all. Integrity is everything.”