Monday, April 6, 2020

Lanes and Leadership

I’ve been thinking a lot about the times when then-Council Member and now County Executive Calvin Ball took flak for addressing ways that the current president of the United States could impact our lives here in Howard County. He got a lot of the “stay in your lane” criticism, along with suggestions that his concerns were nothing more than political grandstanding.

It’s pretty clear to me that everything coming out of the White House daily has a direct connection to Dr. Ball’s ability to do his job protecting and supporting the people of Howard County. We can see how that’s an issue not just for the County Executive but also for the Governor Of the State of Maryland. When citizens don’t believe there is a serious health crisis, their subsequent behavior is a risk to themselves and others, and puts an unnecessary strain on an overworked healthcare system. When hospitals can’t get the medical supplies they need to provide adequate care, people die.

I don’t know how anyone could look at the situation we are in right now and say that what the President says and does has nothing to do with our lives in Howard County.

There’s a well known quote from author Maya Angelou:

When someone shows you who they are, believe them the first time.

If Ball was weighing the plentiful evidence of what a Donald Trump presidency would look like, that’s not political grandstanding. That’s just good common sense. It’s also a sign of good leadership. You don’t just think about what’s happening right now. You also have to keep your eye on things that might be headed your way.

The current national Covid-19 crisis is a huge example of how what happens in Washington does not stay in Washington. It’s not in a different lane. The lane runs right to us and thousands of other communities all over the country.

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