There are two kinds of political leaders: uniters and dividers.
Barack Obama is a uniter; Sarah Palin, a divider. Jim Hunt was a uniter; Jesse Helms, a divider. Ronald Reagan was a uniter; George W. Bush, a divider.
Dividers can succeed in politics. But they don’t leave lasting legacies of accomplishment.
The leaders of the WakeCounty school board, Ron Margiotta and John Tedesco, don’t get this.
They don’t realize that if they talked to their critics, instead of arresting them, they might achieve their goals – or at least move in that direction.
One of the most valuable lessons Jim Hunt taught me is never burn your bridges. You never know when today’s opponent might be tomorrow’s ally.
Margiotta and Tedesco are sowing the seeds of their own failure. The disruption they’ve fueled could well hurt the schools’ performance. What truly qualified professional educator would want to be superintendent in this environment?
If the Wake schools fail, Margiotta and Tedesco will get the blame. They’ll be out of power, out of office and in for years of infamy.