Dear Mr. President–An Open Letter

Dear Mr. President,

Allow me to begin my thoughts by saying that you are my President. Even though I did not vote for you, nonetheless, you are my President because. . .because the laws and procedures of our Great Nation have declared you to be so. Therefore I pray for you every day, that our great God will endow you with wisdom in these times.

My letter to you, sir, is void of politics. Like myself, I am confident that you are exhausted from all this political caterwauling. Let us communicate as citizen to citizen. After all, this is what our Founding Fathers envisioned for this great nation. Amazing, isn’t it, that those men possessed such great wisdom and forward thinking. Accordingly there is an issue for which I must address concerning your recent Presidential Mandate in regards to COVID-19 vaccinations.

Through Hipaa Laws my personal medical information is Federally protected, but I make the conscious choice to freely share with you that I have received both of the Moderna Vaccinations. This was my decision based on the best available scientific information out there. I also observed friends who had received the Vaccine and noticed no ill effects. My point is, Sir, that I made the best decision possible for myself, my family, my friends, and my community. And I am pleased to share with you that thus far we have been safe from this horrid virus. It was my choice, Mr. President. And this leads into the express purpose of this communication, Sir.

I am seeking and asking you to reverse your Presidential Mandate concerning COVID-19 Vaccinations. I do indeed understand your desire, and mine, that this scourge be vanquished from this great nation and the world. But a Presidential Mandate will not, nor can it triumph over this dreaded disease. I am sure your intentions are noble and honorable. And if we are truthful with each other, you and I know that intentions rarely, if ever, resolve complicated issues–such as this pandemic.

Our Founding Fathers created this Nation because decisions, mandates and laws were chosen and enacted by those who were far removed from real life as it happened in real time in real places. Those laws, decisions, and mandates stirred up that great desire for freedom and self-determination. Let us be honest with each other, Sir. Washington D.C. is far removed from the real life that is experienced everyday throughout this great land. Sir, this remark is not an attempt by me to disparage you nor your administration. This has been going on long before you sat in the Oval Office for the first time. For decades, Washington D.C. has been a isolated and insulated from the American citizenry, the citizenry for which the U.S. Constitution was thoughtfully, and sometimes heatedly debated–for the citizens of this Nation.

I will not be so presumptuous as to say I have the solution. Far too many people today are quick to point out the problems but never offer a viable solution. May I suggest, Sir, that you make a decision to repeal the Vaccine Mandate. But repealing one thing also requires choices in a different direction. May I pose to you an alternative path. Exercise your Presidential Mandate for more research on all proposed and existing vaccines.

Not to say I am qualified to take your position, but I want to offer for your consideration a different approach for this research. Since there is so much suspicion surrounding big pharmaceutical companies, have independent researchers who do not have even the appearance of being influenced by the big pharmaceutical companies review their findings and pursue paths from their perspectives and knowledge. Have their research totally transparent and available to the general public. With the tool known as the Internet, at the end of each day they would report what they did, what they discovered, and what, if any conclusions they have reached.

Mr. President, neither you nor anyone else can prevent some people from being–and please pardon my bluntness–from being Stupid! My definition of stupidity is the choice to ignore both facts and truth. Ignorance, on the other hand, is easily defeated with solid and truthful information. What I am attempting to say, Sir, is let’s win the hearts of minds of those who readily respond to factual truth. Transparency in research will go much further than Mandates–regardless of how well intentioned those Mandates are.

Mr. President, I want to thank you for taking the time to listen to these thoughts and reflections. Your duties and responsibilities are both intense and immense; so I pray for you and your administration every day.

Respectfully yours,
Randy Burbank
Citizen of the greatest nation on Earth

What Is Leadership?

Last night was–how can I say it? It was wonderful, stupendous, marvelous, exalting, phenomenal, monumental, fantastic, and other such synonyms. Some of you may be wondering, “What is this crazy preacherman talking about?” What??? Where we you last night? It was there for everyone to see! In fairness, for those who may have just this very afternoon ventured outside of their cave for the first time in over a year, I will tell you. THE University Of Alabama, A.K.A. the Crimson Tide, won ANOTHER National Championship.

The Tide won not only another National Championship, but there were also tons of awards and recognitions given to members of The Crimson Tide. If I sound like a huge fan of The Tide, I am–because my daughter and a lot of my money went to that University. I have an investment in Tuscaloosa. And some of you may be wondering what all my rambling on about The Crimson Tide has to do with the Kingdom Life and today’s topic of Leadership. Good for you, wondering about that because I will gladly let you in on what The Spirit has been teaching me today.

Look at the question: What Is Leadership? Some would define leadership as the talent and ability to get everyone on board and in agreement with the current agenda or goals. But that doesn’t sound right. Some would say it’s the talent and ability create great ideas and lead others into getting onboard with those ideas. Nope, that’s not it. Some might say it’s the talent to be strong and forceful to get others in line. Oh, dear Jesus–that’s not it at all. Some think it takes great skill and talent to be a leader. In the words of the modern philosopher Madea,

So, What Is Leadership? I could go on and on with a lot of words, but let me drop a name: Devonta Smith. He’s been called Smitty and the Slim Reaper. He’s also this year’s winner of the Heisman Trophy. Oh yeah, he’s played football as a wide receiver the past four years for The Crimson Tide. By the alleged experts who have declared that wide receivers should be a certain height and weight, Smitty is undersized in both cases. In addition to being award the Heisman Trophy, Smitty has received Maxwell Award as the college football player of the year, the Walter Camp Player of the year, the Biletnikoff Aware as the nations top college receiver, and after playing only the first half of the National Championship game (because he was injured early in the third quarter) he the the Offensive Most Valuable Player. I’ve probably missed some.

If you haven’t seen or heard of Smitty, you may think this is some overwhelming personality. But watch the true Smitty in his acceptance speech for the Heisman Trophy:

Alex Leatherwood, one of those big and strong offensive linemen for The Tide had this to say about Smitty:

He’s grateful. But one thing about Smitty, he’s a great player, but he’s an even better teammate and person. I mean, you couldn’t ask for a better friend, to be honest. I’ve known him since before we even got here, and he’s always been just like a great dude, know what I mean?

Sports Illustrated website at https://www.si.com/college/alabama/bamacentral/alabamas-devonta-smith-not-only-first-class-player-but-first-rate-teammate-as-well

Smitty is a leader, not because of his skills or, as analysts like to say, his physicality. It’s his character that makes him a leader. Great leaders are people who possess great character and who live out of that character every day. They aren’t perfect of course–but because of their character, their mistakes do not define them. I heard one announcer say that whichever NFL team drafts Smitty is not only getting a talented wide receiver, but they will get a man of character who will influence the entire organization.

Now, to me that sounds like what a real leader is and the real definition of a leader. A leader is someone of great character who influences others to desire those same qualities and will put forth the effort to achieve it. This definition of a leader will apply to every situation and scenario, period! Politics? We need more Smittys! Corporations and businesses? We need more Smittys! Families? Clubs and groups? Even Churches? Oh, do we need more Smittys.

What I’m trying to say is this: You can and WILL be a leader when you are a person of great character, one who values others and understands that nothing good comes our way without the willingness to work hard, to have the desire to get back up one more time than you are knocked down, and ignore the naysayers who say you can’t! We need leaders today–not the loud and obnoxious ones. We need those who by their example, that God can and WILL us to bring about real and positive change in the culture.

Oh, one more thing: