Letter: Elected officials are not role models

I came across this Wikipedia definition: A role model is a person whose behavior, example, or success is or can be emulated by others, especially by younger people. Then, in another article, it was suggested that because of the job itself no modern politician can be a role model for children because of what the job entails. A political person operates according to several factors, but essentially what citizens allow them to do. Three quick thoughts for consideration.

1. Communication no longer has to involve a sender and a receiver interacting directly. Today’s technology often promotes anonymity which permits easy negativity and hurtful conduct. With limited chances for face-to-face interaction, cooperation and compromise are limited or lost.

2. Observing the conduct of some serving today, good character is not required. Many voters apparently concluded that getting change was more important than a candidate’s character.

3. Allegiance to one’s party seems to be the first priority for most politicians. When voting, even compromising one’s own values and beliefs appears necessary. And heaven forbid that an effort should be made to explain votes or stances taken on issues to those they represent.

Just these three thoughts help identify why elected officials should not be role models. Both elected officials and we who elected them share responsibility for this.

For a better situation, everyone, including you and me, should take time to decide needed changes. Then a cooperative effort needs to take place to make change happen.

Larry Bowen

Cedar Rapids

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