Those who want to lead us must have the courage to face media and detractors

Phptp: President Rodrigo Duterte delivering is second state of the Nation Address in July 2017. After the formal address, he goes outside to face protesters (wikipedia)

During the 2017 State of the Nation Address, President Rodrigo Roa Duterte did the unprecedented act of facing antigovernment protesters and engaging them directly on their issues. This follows several instances of press conferences where he directly answered questions even from media personalities.

This shows how consistently unafraid he is of engaging people who may not agree with him. The Pilipinas debates of 2016 are a testament to the tenacity and mental acuity of the erstwhile lesser known Mayor from a Mindanao city as he gamely faced off against candidates of known national stature: the incumbent Vice President, a cabinet secretary who previously ran for Vice president, A Senator who ran for the presidency twice, and another lady senator whose actor father previously ran for President.  

In a democracy, this capability and maturity is vital for a leader, especially coming at a time when he or she needs to harness the best ideas will be needed to address a rainbow of problems from pandemic response and recovery, to climate change, and the geopolitical adjustments- all part of the proverbial new normal .

For a leader in a democracy, this courage to engage is primal. Without it, a leader and the government he leads will have a tough time gathering support for important tough measures and reforms, and process any feedback that can help sharpen governance to further such efforts.