February 2010

An Example of Leadership…

ECUADOR CHILE Chile’s President, Michelle Bachelet set an outstanding example of leadership in general, and women’s leadership in particular, following her country’s devastating 8.8 magnitude earthquake.

Before the full impact of the tragedy had been calculated, Bachelet was on Chilean television screens and air waves reassuring her citizens that all possible resources were being mobilized to help them and asking them to stay calm.

What resonated with me, was not only those very Presidential words, but more importantly, what I believe are the feminine strengths of leadership that Bachelet displayed. She followed her official message with one that spoke to the heart and soul of her people, asking them to think beyond themselves, to offer assistance to others and “to take those who are homeless into your home”.

That willingness to show empathy and understanding is a hallmark’s of women’s leadership. To speak authentically from the heart demonstrates strength, not weakness.

President Bachelet is to be commended for simultaneously taking charge of the situation and comforting her people.  

Big Brother in the Bedroom…of Our Kids!

The recent case involving the Lower Merion School District and their use of laptop computer cameras to spy on students in their homes, is one of those stories that tends to leave you, at least it did me, in stunned disbelief.

webcamWhether the school owns the computers or not, that ownership does not give them the right to become peeping toms in people’s homes.

What is even more shocking to me is the fact that professional educators, people who we tell our children they should trust and respect, would so blatantly disregard the constitutionally guaranteed right to privacy…a right they are supposed to be teaching to the very children upon whom they are spying.

The serious implications of these actions by LMSD are compounded by what appears to be a less than concerned attitude by LMSD’s top administrators and school board who have “deactivated the webcams while they conduct a thorough review: That’s really big of them. I think an abject and public apology would be more in order.

Speaking for myself and my family, the knowledge that someone had watched my child in the privacy of their room, would test my limits of civilized behavior. When the dust settles on this case, we can only hope that everyone responsible is out of a job.

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