Friday, July 20, 2012

George Washington - A Man. A Myth.

(Photo credit: Wikipedia)
If you are like me, a picture of George Washington hung in classrooms along your educational journey. From what I understand, fewer and fewer classrooms host a picture of George Washington and some history books and researchers tend to downplay his importance in our nation's history. As students of fire, we can only view history from the lens of those before us. Eric Carlson, leader of our Gettysburg Staff Ride, often quotes Paul Tillich in saying:
  • All history is remembered history.
  • The meaning of history lies beyond history.
  • There are two periods in history: one of preparation and one of expectation.
Therefore, as you follow our Leaving a Leadership Legacy series, I suggest you look past the author or speaker bias and view the perspective as if true and assess how you would lead within each situation. Additionally, I encourage students of fire to expand their research of Washington's leadership legacy, including various perspectives, and participate in healthy debate with other students.
As an introduction to our series, I invite you to participate in Columbia University’s four-session online seminar “George Washington and the Legacy of Character.” The learning objectives include:
  • Compare and contrast George Washington's modern reputation and his true character.
  • Understand how Washington's experiences as a youth influenced his behavior later in life, especially in his role as president.
  • Learn about the classical philosophy and Stoic ideals that were popular among Virginians in the eighteenth century.
  • Understand how Washington's actions and beliefs contributed to his admiration by the American public.
  • Be familiar with the basic events of Washington's life before and after his term of public service.
  • Understand the ways in which Washington's death reflected his lifelong character.

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