The Dark Side of Leadership

By Natalie R., Scarlett M., Erin K., and Jamie T.

Leadership: having the ability to gather people around them for a common goal be it good or evil

Values such as vision, boldness, communication, and a servant's heart are the tools of good leadership but they can also be used negatively to inspire bloodshed, death, and hysteria.

Vision: Adolf Hitler

Vision gives a leader direction in their influence. With it, they can inspire passion in those who follow them to complete a specific goal. However, that goal does not necessarily have to be a positive thing. Adolf Hitler is the perfect example of a leader with a very clear and very evil vision. His single minded goals of world domination and the creation of a perfect Aryan race led to:

-World War II

-Genocide: the murder of millions

-The rapid fall of German society for a second time as they were left with the blame for another world war

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Boldness: Fidel Castro

Boldness is a quality that allows one to take a stand and be confident in their decisions and ideas. This boldness can be used to gain leadership positions and also to maintain popularity and control while still sparking violence and inhumane actions. Fidel Castro was a man of bold manner who shook up Cuban government and ideas, but also brought about violence in the people.

-Sparked a Cuban Revolution

-Lead many revolutionary and rebellious groups to overthrow the president and the government

-Created a wariness between Cuba and the United States (Cuban Missile Crisis)

-The 26th of July Movement

-Reformed Cuba into a one-party socialist state under Communist Party rule

Communication: "Don't Drink the Kool-Aid"

Communication is a skill that can be used for personal ends to persuade and trick others into following them without any doubt or regard for their own well being. A more recent symbol of the power of persuasion is that of Reverend Jim Jones who with his silver tongue was able to:

-Convince people he could heal arthritis and other worldly ills if they would give up their possessions and follow him

-Brought people to a so called utopia

-Death of a California congressman

-Jonestown Massacre of over 900 individuals including 276 children

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Servant's Heart: Antony

The servant's heart can cause a leader to take up the flag for the wrong people. In Shakespeare's "Julius Caesar" Mark Antony is a character that definitely has a servant's heart. He uses this willingness to help other people to help Rome and his recently deceased friend Caesar. In striving to regain the peoples' love for Caesar, Antony causes many atrocities to occur including:

-A war between the people of Rome

-The deaths of Cassius and Brutus, leaders in Rome

-An animosity to arise in Rome's civilians and

-The brutal death of an innocent poet

Conclusion

Many great civilizations have been lead astray because of leaders whose great qualities were used for the wrong reason. As it is seen through these examples, even the best leaders can spark a violence in their people so barbaric as to murder innocent people.

Sources:

-http://www.theleadermaker.com/hitlers-vision-for-the-future-of-the-world/

-www.quotecollection.com

-http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fidel_Castro