The first word that comes to mind when I think of leadership is dissent. Dissent in a philosophical lens refers to someone who is in opposition of a prevailing idea, individual, or opinion. This person is actively working to stand true in their stance, thus they are the leader of their idea. I think of leaders throughout history from Nat Turner to Bernie Sanders who identified problems and conditions that impacted not only themselves, but others, and worked tirelessly to problem solve and formulate ideas (or policy) that support and protect human rights. Entire revolutions have resulted from the ideas of dissenting individuals because they did not stand to the behaviors or ideas that caused suffering, suppression, or impacted human rights. A strong leader who can stand in their morals and counteracts against those who disagree is how change occurs. (Most) Dissenters do not stand for unjust behavior, they take a humanistic approach and represent the people.
A good leader possesses many qualities that does not lead them to overpower the individuals that they are leading. A leader should be openminded and listen to the thoughts of those who share the same values and opinions as those they are representing. Outside opinions are important to take note of as a leader, but they should not deter them from what they are trying to achieve. Rather, outside opinions should serve as a reminder of what they are striving to achieve and why. A leader should be kind, respectful, and empathetic. This leads to the formulation of stronger relations between the people they are representing, thus strengthening the network of individuals who are fighting for the same cause. A leader should have immaculate communication skills as they are speaking to and for an entire group of people and must clearly articulate the wants, needs, and goals of the mass. Finally, they should be innovative, have great critical thinking and problem-solving skills, and be honest and loyal.
The quality of a leader impacts the leadership of a cause. In my opinion, leadership is one of the most critical components in the success or enactment of a cause. Leadership serves as the foundation to ensure that people are heard and represented; this is what leads to beneficial laws and regulations that reflect the wants of the people. Leadership should serve as a support system for individuals to gather, express their opinions and goals, and have their leader(s) serve as the main communicator. It takes teamwork to produce great leadership; leadership cannot happen on its own.