By Dan Proft
“People don’t buy what you do. They buy why you do it.” – Simon Sinek
We have 60 days to decide if we are going to sacrifice Illinois on the pyre of government-directed subsistence or elevate our existence.
We have 60 days to decide if we will continue to countenance those who have fixed state government against the families who finance it or choose policymakers who will instead reward people who play by the rules.
We have 60 days to decide if we will watch truly vulnerable persons exploited in service to the power interests of the purveyors of big government or demand government programs properly serve their intended beneficiaries.
The choices above will largely be determined by which candidates provide the best answers to the question, “Why do you do what you do?”
There is a not a singular answer to this question. Fortune cookie clichés distributed by the campaign arms of political parties for dutiful recitation will not do.
Candidates who share a party label differ widely in life experience, professional expertise, and personal motivations. But all share (or should share) a desire to make life better for others.
Candidates would do well to remember that they are three-dimensional human beings just like the voters they are addressing. They should act accordingly. That requires candidates treat other adults with the respect they deserve by authentically communicating why it is candidates do what they do.
Why do I persist in the Illinois political arena and affiliate as I do? Two reasons:
(1) Because I want Illinois to be the best state in the nation when it comes to providing care to individuals with developmental disabilities. Currently Illinois is the worst. This failure is happening on my watch. Therefore, I am not doing enough to care for the least of my brothers. I want to do more.
(2) Because I want every child to have the same opportunity to earn an education that I had so that they can someday grow up to have a phony baloney job talking on the radio that finances other intellectual pursuits, hobbies and a mediocre golf game. Right now Illinois’ K-12 system is not providing those opportunities. Two-thirds of 4th and 8th graders in this state neither read nor do math at grade level. This failure is happening on my watch. Therefore, I am not doing enough. I want to do more.
There is no exhaustive list of good answers to why good people do what they do. Good candidates make sure the voters know their answer.