If there’s anything we Americans want in our leaders, it’s confidence. From the mayor to the governor to the president, we want to hear our leaders exude confidence. Even if our leaders stretch the truth a little, we still want them to sound confident. Historians sometimes say that one reason Franklin Roosevelt was popular as a president is because he projected enormous confidence to the American people. In the frustrating days of the Great Depression and the fearful days of World War II, President Roosevelt’s supreme confidence in a better future helped to turn the country around psychologically.
So important is confidence that we can scarcely imagine what would happen if our political leaders admitted their own confusion and uncertainty. Suppose President Obama stood up in front of reporters and said something like the following: “I’m frankly perplexed about how the United States should respond to the radical Islamic group ISIS (Islamic State in Iraq and Syria). We can bomb them, but I don’t think that will make them go away. We could send troops to fight them, but that might just make the situation worse. I’m just not sure how to deal with this problem.” It’s doubtful the President would ever say such a thing, but if he did the criticism would likely be harsh.
- Luke 1:26 - 38