Close your eyes and think about your idea of the perfect president. Whether you know much about politics or not, everyone has this idea of how the president of the United States should be. Maybe you think a leader should be honest and humble, or diplomatic and professional. Maybe you would like to see another Obama in the Oval Office, or another Reagan. No matter what qualities you look for, there is always hope for our future president to be everything we want and need. This week I asked five young adults what qualities they wanted to see in our country’s next president, and here is what I learned.
Kristen Hancock of Tuscaloosa, Alabama is passionate about having a wise president. Wisdom can help solve issues that lie within all facets of the government, all facets of life. For example, Kristen wants our next president to focus on closing the gap between the rich and the poor. So a well-educated, experienced, and insightful candidate with extensive knowledge in the economy is the type of president who would be most likely to address this gap. Wisdom also goes beyond experience and knowledge and extend to the potential a person has to make smart decisions under intense pressure.
Emily Holliman of Boston, Massachusetts is looking for our next president to be someone open-minded and willing to compromise. Emily stressed that without these specific characteristics, it’s difficult for our government to negotiate both internally and externally. Although Emily prefers an unbiased president, she also is hoping the next president will be someone who stands firm in what they believe in. There is a very special balance of passion and open-mindedness necessary in order to be a successful president of the United States. She would like to see our next president be someone who is a spirited feminist with previous experience in the government.
Laz Lett of Lubbock, Texas would like to see the next president to show an astounding amount of charisma. Laz thinks it is important that our president has this quality because a good leader needs to be able to interact well with other people in a polite, respectful, yet memorable way. Laz says he wants the next president to be someone he could see himself going out to eat with and talking about down-to-earth things, like sports and movies. Another characteristic Laz would like to see is transparency. Not only a transparency of who they are as a, but also a sense of transparency regarding their true government agenda. Like many Americans, Laz aims to be informed and educated on what the government is doing in the most straightforward way possible.
Marla Liles of Huntsville, Alabama feels as though the next leader of our country should be calculated and prepared. Initially, we thought calculated was an interesting way to describe a desirable presidential trait, but after Marla explained her thoughts, it made perfect sense. She wants our next president to plan and calculate all of the possible outcomes and errors before jumping into any action, large or small, which could have a significant impact on our entire nation. Marla also said that she wants our future president to have plans in place, just in case what could go wrong actually does go wrong. She says, “Preparation and calculation go hand in hand because if you want to be prepared, you have to be willing to plan and calculate before you act,”.
Melody Wilders of New York City feels as though our next president should be kind and compassionate. It would be nice to see someone with empathy in office, she says, who stresses how important kindness is when you are leading an entire country. Melody wants the next president be compassionate to people of different cultures and nationalities. She went on to say that the family separations at our southern border would not be happening if compassion was present.
What qualities would you like to see in our next president? Who knows, it could be you!
Jamie has been writing ever since... well ever since she could physically write. She loved the control of it. The power to create anything and everything and the power to take it all away. She loved how it made her feel. She still does. She has a slightly unhealthy infatuation with Frida Kahlo (But she is not a bandwagon). She doesn't have her hair the same color for very long, only partially due to the fact that she fears commitment. She lives by the words of Ernest Hemingway: "Destroyed but not Defeated" from one of her favorite books, The Old Man and the Sea. She is passionate about dissolving the stigma surrounding mental health issues and hopes to be an advocate for those suffering from a mental illness.