The Republicans and Perception

I have a real beef with the Republican Party.  In a media-driven culture, they apparently have no clue about perception.  In a world of instant communication, where cell phones, text messages, and email can be sent globally, the first impression matters.  As I look at this election – and past ones as well – it’s pretty obvious that the Democrats get it.  They’re turning out women, minorities, young people – looking for a well packaged candidate that can connect with the American people.  But Republicans keep sending out the old white guys and expect them to sell ideas like “original,” “innovative,” and “change.”

The truth is, I’m becoming an old white guy, so I’m certainly not against that crowd.  And for the record – the best ideas win – whether they come from the young or old, white, black, or whatever,  and male or female.

But from a very real point of view – perception matters.  I know there are young, vibrant women and minorities in the Republican party – so why aren’t they being groomed for positions of responsibility?

And this frustration runs through the party like a laser beam.  I’ve always admired George Bush for his ability to lead and make a decision.  Particularly after all the Clinton years, when we had a president who let the polls make his decisions for him.  But even great leaders have to respect perception, because if the people they lead aren’t behind their decisions, they’re not leaders at all.  As John Maxwell says, “They’re not leading, they’re just out for a walk.”

That is why President Bush will not be remembered as a great leader.

From our growing monster-sized government, to excessive spending, to the nanny state, to so much more, the Republicans are destroying their legacy, by ignoring their perception.

If the Republican Party hired me to consult with them, the first thing I’d do is give a top-down lecture about perception.  What do the American people think of when they think, “Republican?”  Why does it matter?  What should they do about it?

The answers to those questions should shake them into reality, and force them to make real change happen…

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

  • republican = isolationist, out of touch, rigid, stuck and I could go on.

    If you haven't heard the latest about Obama, you might want to read my blog.  He is linked to Jesus and gay in one video! 

  • Leslie I T Assih

    If I was not involved in the media I would have completely agreed with the 'perception' defines the reality of what people think of you. But that is not necessarily true for all things including the media. Truth in first or second glance is never grasped immediately or nice to eyes (Isaiah 53:2-3) but it will eventually rise to the top when all is said and done. Deception is always cloaked in attractiveness and there lies its strength its power of perception – it niceness to the eyes and sweetness to ears – appealing to the senses all the time. But eventually it will fade away and that is the problem. Media is largely governed by the culture of the day which is rooted in self and the views and tastes of those in control of the media. But truth is best portrayed in action and in deeds from the ground level to be effective at the top and hit the bullseye of the heart. Perception can be altered but truth in the heart is rooted. Sometimes God's best treasures are placed in very insignificant places, people and things – and we need Him to open our eyes to see beyond the veil of perception.

  • Elizabeth Conley

    I've got my own beef with the Republican Party, and it has nothing to do with perception and everything to do with platform, but that's another subject.

    I think the Republican Party thinks of journalism as a basically hostile and entirely chaotic force in the U.S.  They think journalists are adversaries, and even if journalism were friendly, Republicans would consider journalists to be too unreliable to make trustworthy allies.

    From the Republican perspective, it's better to be silent and thought a fool then to open your mouth and remove all doubt.  Anything they do and say can and absolutely will be used against them.  Thankfully, if they're silent the frustrated journalists will savage Democrats out of sheer boredom and natural blood lust.

    That's what I've seen in the last few election cycles, anyway.