I was pondering “politicians” versus “public servants.” Why? Because I think a public servant walks with a devil on their shoulder and a politician doesn’t carry that weight. You know, like one of those cartoons where you see the character standing there with a devil on one shoulder and the angel on the other? Each of them is giving the character advice. The devil is saying, “Go ahead, do it. You know you want to. It will be easier.” While the angel is giving an explanation of why you shouldn’t. We all know it’s the character’s “conscience” speaking.
Serving the people at the local level may not be as exciting as other levels of public service, but I think it makes it easier to be reminded of why you were elected and who you are supposed to be working for in the first place. It also offers more opportunity to interact with “the people.” That leaves a lot of room for criticism, praise and even back seat driving.
Die-hard politicians only seem to be looking ahead, as if they are playing a game of chess, planning their next move or where they will be headed next on the ladder. The game they play really stands out just prior to a re-election. That’s when it may appear they have the angel guiding them.
There are some who get elected and just go along for the ride. No decisions using their head…and no sticking their necks out. No listening with their ears. They’re not easy to locate either because they are always ducking. If they have a conscience, they’re ignoring it.
No decision made will please every constituent. That’s just the way it is. I think a “public servant” must think about the people first when they make each decision. I know I will never be a “politician.” If you don’t like me for other reasons, at least know I’ve had the devil and angel on my shoulders in the short time that I’ve been a public servant. I want to flick the devil off leaving a big grin on my face, but I know he will hop back up there. That’s okay, because it keeps you balanced. It shouldn’t be about listening to the devil on one side and making yourself look good, or listening to the angel on the other side, always going along with the flow…and making yourself look good. You need to listen to both sides of your conscience, and in the end know when you work towards something or cast that vote it was the right thing for the people, not for yourself.