Coaching and Politics

It’s been hard to write much lately because I’ve been troubled about things and want to be careful what I put out in public. See, a coach’s responsibility is to not assert an agenda. My goal is to stay away from putting people off by espousing a particular ideology.

On the other hand, writers and artists have often had things to say to the world on political, social and cultural issues, and I fit into that bucket too.

Sunday night we attended an event to support the protesters at Standing Rock, those opposing an oil pipeline through their water supply. They are concerned about the possibility (or perhaps inevitability) of an oil spill. We heard people from diverse backgrounds do dances, give speeches and read poetry, play music. We listened to Peruvian music and poetry from Ecuador. Heard an African-American from South Bend do spoken word. And I sat there thinking, “what does a dopey middle-aged straight white male have to contribute?” Can I sit around writing about how “WE” are all experiencing this oppression? Of course not. I am one of the privileged.

The grouchy old white guy sits there with his flowing mustache, his wiry white hair sticking up every which way. He wears a white linen suit and bow tie. He sips a cool drink and begins to think less about what he can not say, and more about what he can.

There is precedent: the old white guy (Samuel Clemens and Garrison Keillor) writes satire. To borrow from Geico’s ad: “You write satire. It’s what you do.”

Sometimes satire is pointed and deep, other times it’s just fun. For now I’m closer to the fluffy end on the satire scale of “Cotton Candy to Habanero Pepper Sauce”, more like Mark Twain writing “A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court” than, say, his treatise on King Leopold II’s abuses in Congo. But if satire is a welcome relief to you, you’ll be happy to know that my book “Beatdown in Bangkok” a Stetson Jeff adventure, is available here  for free on Amazon! Sign up for our email list when you’re done reading it, and you can get the second book in the series free too: “Mayhem in Marrakesh”.

So, what am I doing when it comes to political, social and cultural upheaval? I’m making fun of white guys. It’s what I do. Hope you have a good laugh. It’s good medicine.


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The author lives in Goshen, Indiana with his wife and four children. He is self-employed as a leadership coach working with business executives, writers and other artists, and spiritual leaders. His clients enjoy business growth, increased vision and purpose, work/family lifestyle balance, and freedom from writer’s block.

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