“Success is not how high you have climbed, but how you make a positive difference to the world.”Roy T Bennett
Our country seems to be struggling with the concept of leadership and what kind of country we want to be. I’ve even heard it said that we are warring over whether we will continue to be a democracy or become an autocracy. I am trying to understand why anyone would want our country to come under the rule of an autocrat. I am also coming to understand that it is possible to continue to have democratic procedures in place but live under a dictator. I guess I didn’t quite get that before. Our experience with the last president woke me up.
People behave differently under autocrats than they do under leaders with a democratic style of leadership. People tend to be more dependent on the autocrat to tell them what to do and even what to think. They are less influenced by their peers and more aggressive toward one another, even to the point of turning on each other or scapegoating. A person can be made a target of hostility if they are not seen as part of the group.
Autocrats have certain things in common. The autocrat believes that people are basically weak and gullible, that others are objects to be used, and that one can manipulate others whenever necessary in order to accomplish ones goals. The main talents of an autocrat are craftiness, duplicity, and cunning. They have little emotional involvement with others and see relationships in a utilitarian way. They have an innate ability to perceive the needs of others and manipulate those needs. They want dominance and will get it at all costs.
The autocrat dictates orders and determines all the policies without involving others in the decision making. So, why are people attracted to autocracy? What do they get out of it? I am puzzled.
When a leader is more democratic that leader sets policy through involving others in the decision making with discussion, interaction, and encouragement. They enable people to cooperate with each other and are considerate of people’s feelings and needs. People in a democratic system show more initiative, friendliness, and take responsibility for things. They will continue to work toward a goal even if the leader is away and take pride in the quality of their work.
Democratic leaders tend to be intelligent, have high aptitude, attractive personality, and are task motivated. They have insights into situations and habits of responsibility, initiative, persistence, and self-confidence. They are open to originality in problem solving while being willing to accept the consequences of their decisions and actions. They know how to structure systems to meet the task.
A democratic leader strives to justify decisions as good for the whole group and wants to involve the whole group. They want to persuade and inspire others to cooperate together to accomplish a goal. The democratic leader wants others to participate because then their ideas, skills, and information make a contribution to the goal and also because then the participants will be committed to what they help do.
I don’t understand why anyone would want to move toward an autocracy and away from a democracy.
My beloved ones in Christ, let us continue to pray for our country during these confusing times.