Does The President Really Matter?

Just this morning I heard a woman state: “It doesn’t matter who you choose for President, because one person cannot change the world. The change has to come from each person, themselves.” She compared the President of the United States to the Pastor of a church, explaining that the pastor cannot make his parish make the changes necessary to become a better people, the people must make the changes themselves.

This was quite a statement for me. Is she right? Why would you even bother to vote if it doesn’t matter who you vote for? In one sense, her argument is supported by the theory that the President does not cannot pass laws (in theory) without the support of congress.. So it’s the congressional body, as a whole, that must act in unison in order to accomplish our goals. That is why we have so much gridlock in Washington. So yes, in a sense she is right. One person cannot make the people change…the people have to want to change. (Sounds like a twelve step program)

But just like the Pastor in a church, our President sets the standard for the people. Our President is our representative (at least he/she is supposed to be) and it is how that President is perceived that will affect the change that we all need. And like the Pastor, our President can either make change extremely difficult (by using his veto power) or mislead us into dark waters without a life jacket. We have seen this many times before.

It is also important to recognize that the President’s power goes beyond the United States. The President has more ability to make a difference on Foreign Lands. There (as shown in recent history) he/she can lead his flock into uncharted territory…forgetting to put out the trail of breadcrumbs for his soldiers to find their way home.

I guess the final question is,” If it doesn’t matter who you pick to be President, then how did we get into such a mess?” Think back for the past eight years. Bush, Chaney, Rumsfeld…do you really think that it doesn’t matter? I actually didn’t pick any of them, but someone did. Please don’t tell me that it doesn’t matter. And don’t even go there about picking the Vice President. Just ask Linden B. Johnson, he was the Vice President for President Kennedy, he’ll tell you it makes a difference.