From the title you might guess that I am going to promote the idea that our politicians should all be possessed of impeccable lives that are above reproach.  On the contrary, I believe that is an impossible standard that often sabotages our chances of electing very capable even if flawed people.

We have reached the point where anyone who runs for any public office is put under a microscope and is discredited if any misstep, mistake, episode of poor judgment, or any fleeting moment of indiscretion is found in their past.  I am not suggesting that we consider serial killers or sexual predators as our leaders; however, by demanding perfection, we limit our choices to a very small pool of people who either have never done anything wrong or, more likely, never got caught.

There is a saying that the unexamined life is not worth living.   I take that to mean that it is only when we recognize and resolve our inner conflicts that we are able to evolve and become a better person.  I think that people who have been tested by their mistakes are stronger from the experience.

So, why would we want flawed people running our government?   Because that is who we are, we all are flawed and imperfect people.   I suggest that we should prefer the imperfect individual for public office.   I think that real people who have lived and learned from their mistakes are better equipped to lead than someone who has not known what it is like to recognize and overcome their imperfections and flaws.  We live in an imperfect world and we need people who have led real lives with real problems and have a real understanding of what life as we know it is all about.

The Media, social commentators, and various and sundry political pundits have hounded all but the most bland and sanctimonious people from politics.  Let’s embrace and elect genuine people who possess all of the self awareness, life skills, and depth of feelings that can only come from living a life that has had some hard knocks and personal setbacks.

If we are going to give someone the power to make the rules, we should want that person to have walked a mile in our imperfect shoes.