It was once a common theme in science fiction humor for a flying saucer to land in front of witnesses, with little green men coming out to say: “Take us to your leader.”
If this happened to you, to whom would you take them?
Do you have a leader, and if so, who?
Most people seem to think of a politician in this case — perhaps a president — but who in their right mind wants to follow a politician? Why would they?
It’s similar to the mistake of looking to politicians as role models. No one who seeks political power is worthy to be your role model.
If you mistake a politician for a leader you will be led astray. You’re better off on your own, even if you don’t know for sure where you’re going. Your own mistakes will not be as disastrous as the mistake of following a politician, even under the worst case scenario.
Politicians rarely lead. Their normal approach is to rule. If you doubt this, refuse to “follow” where a politician tells you to go. If you’re allowed to take your own path without punishment, then perhaps the politician was also a leader. If, instead, threats of government violence result from your independence, you aren’t dealing with a leader, but with a ruler.
You don’t need a leader most of the time, if ever, and you never need to be ruled. You know your own life better than anyone else. Why follow someone who doesn’t know where you need to go? Especially a person who probably can’t even run their own life very well, as seems to always be the case with politicians, much less run everyone else’s life successfully.
A leader will be on the front line when a threat is faced. Not hiding behind wave after wave of cannon fodder, nor sitting in an office getting reports and sending orders. If they send you into danger while they stay safe, facing nothing more deadly than the risk of losing the next election, they are not a leader.
I’ve never seen a politician I would want as my leader. You may feel differently. I wouldn’t forbid you to follow whoever you like, nor force you to follow someone you didn’t want to follow. I ask the same in return.
So if little green men ever walk up and ask you to, “Take us to your leader,” I hope you’ll respond with, “That would be me. What can I do for you?”