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Are you a Chief or are you an Indian?© - Rabbi David Baum

Are you a Chief or are you an Indian?© Parashat Shoftim, 2015/5775 Rabbi David Baum, Congregation Shaarei Kodesh
David, “Are you a Chief or are you an Indian?”
I remember that question like it was yesterday.I was asked this question years ago, during my time in high school when I applied to be part of a highly coveted group called the Executive Board of Student Government.
Keep in mind, the mascot of our school was a Confederate Colonel so it wasn’t the most politically correct question.
Nevertheless, they were asking me – do you see yourself as a leader or a follower?
There are a couple of ways to answer the question – one can say, there are times when I am a Chief, there are times when I’m an Indian, meaning, I’m not always a leader, sometimes I follow.You can say, I’m an Indian, but then you’ll never get the job.Or, you can say, I’m a chief, I’m a leader; which might have been what they wanted me to say.Kids think leaders have confidence – they tell their people what to do because…