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OpEdNews Op Eds    H3'ed 4/21/10

The Anatomy of Authentic Leadership

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In recent weeks, considerable turmoil has emerged among some elite members of the Civil Rights community.

Publicly aired expressions germinating from PBS's Tavis Smiley and the National Action Network's President Rev. Al Sharpton, in which both parties have accused the other of working against the interests of the African-American community in an effort to garner favor from members of the political class - Former President Bill Clinton in relation to Smiley and the current Head of State Barack Obama with respect to Sharpton - have created a stir within many African-American quarters.

These contentious allegations along with further subtle articulations generated by Sharpton suggesting that perhaps entrepreneurial aspirations partially serve as the catalyst for some of the actions of those within the Civil Rights community - Sharpton's reference to the desire of some activists to boost book sales - have raised questions regarding not only the legitimacy of these claims but implicitly and perhaps more importantly; those with respect to the axioms which undergird the concept of authentic leadership.

In the face of a national economic crisis in which the African-American populace has experienced considerable hardships, as reflected in essentially every statistical category that would signify the social standing of a people, it is of immeasurable importance those individuals - established and emerging - who function under the premise of working to bring forth relief to this population, be in possession of specific intangible qualities if their ascendance to the position of "leader" is to lend strength to the effort to which they profess to support.

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Frederick Alexander Meade is a syndicated columnist providing analysis on social and political matters. His works appear in news magazines and publications internationally.
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