Trickledown Behavior



A Vice President shouts out “F- – – You” to a senator in the United State Senate Chambers. A House Member yells “You Lie” to the first African American President during the televised State of the Union Address.  A presidential candidate acts like a bully and give …

Copyright © 2010 by Walker McDonald


Copyright. This work is covered by national and international law. No part of this work covered by the copyright hereon may be reproduced or used in any form by any means – graphic, electronic, or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, taping, or information storage and retrieval systems – without written permission of the author.

Contact Information

Walker McDonald

  1. O. Box 300223

Denver, CO 80203

Tel:  303.863.1079


Website: 4Aspects


The language of the media is deception and the language of politicians is to conceal                               —Bill Moyers


Trickle Down Behavior

A Vice President shouts out “F- – – You” to a senator in the United State Senate Chambers. A House Member yells “You Lie” to the first African American President during the televised State of the Union Address.  A presidential candidate acts like a bully and give out the personal cell phone number of another presidential candidate. The Speaker of the House says F – – – You to the Senate Majority Leader in front of the media. A congressman sends obscene photos of himself to unsuspecting women. Presidential candidates lie, bully, manipulate the facts/truth and make promises that are not grounded in reality. They openly practice racism and sexism. They deny and spin their own words and the media isn’t holding them accountable (the media is fighting for its side) There is no longer a penalty for making it up.

13% of Americans approve of the job congress is doing while 70% disapprove. (Huffpost 1/16).

SPLC survey: Presidential campaign leading to widespread fear, bullying in schools. (April 13, 2016) A survey of approximately 2,000 teachers by the Southern Poverty Law Center indicates that the presidential campaign is having a profoundly negative impact on schoolchildren across the country, according to a report released today. “We’re deeply concerned about the level of fear among minority children who feel threatened by both the incendiary campaign rhetoric and the bullying they’re encountering in school,” said SPLC President Richard Cohen.


A teacher of color overhears four Caucasian teachers speak openly about how wonderful it will be when their presidential hopeful is elected. Their presidential hopeful is a bully and has made more racist and bigoted remakes of any presidential hopeful in recent history. There are a number of dreamers in these teacher’s classes and one of them overheard. The teachers also have the reputation of speaking disrespectfully to teachers of color in front their students. Does the teacher of color have the right to be afraid for these children and herself? Does she have the right to be concerned about the safety and quality of education for the dreamers and students of color? If a presidential hopeful is a bully and teachers act like bullies towards other teachers and students, why should students act any different? Is it surprising that a student might treat a teacher or other adult with similar disrespect when such behavior is being modeled by those with authority.


Now, tell me why a high school student can’t tell their teacher to f – – – off. Well that’s different. Right, young people should do as you say, not as you do. And, history proves “do what I say, not as I do” has been very successful. All it’s ever done is prove the hypocrisy’s of the older generation and added confusion and chaos to the developmental stages of the younger generation. This confusion and chaos creates; mistrust, frustration, hopelessness, fear, anger, and anxiety. This mistrust, frustration, hopelessness, fear, anger, and anxiety are being expressed inappropriately or suppressed and creating emotional and/or physical illness. It’s also creating division and widens the generation gap.


If the intentions of your political leaders and media personalities are to spin (manipulate) the facts to their benefits; why should your children act any differently? If it’s acceptable that your political leaders and media personalities lie and you accept that as okay; how can you discipline your children for lying? If your political leaders are not held accountable and blame all the cultural problems on the other party, why should your children take responsibility for their actions?


Shouting “F- – – You” in the United State Senate Chambers is a display of disrespect towards everything that is held sacred about the United States; its history, government, constitution, and its people. It disrespects every military person who’s made the ultimate sacrifice.   Yelling “You Lie” to the first African American President on international television might give you pop star status within your party. However, it can be seen as an act of bigotry and a slap in the face to ever person of color. How did the person of color feel watching this? How did it affect their behavior? Did it build trust for white leaders and/or politicians? A presidential candidate acting like a bully on national television only supports playground and cyber bullying. How many children have committed suicide due to being bullied? 14% of high schools students have considered suicide due to being bullied and 7% have attempted it. Saying f- – – you to the Senate Majority Leader in front of the media is even further display of how far your cultural leadership has regressed. It also indicates how far removed from reality your cultural leaders have become. In what other profession could an executive come out and say; his number one commitment is to get the president fired. All of the above acts display weak character. Does that mean Americans are of weak character? Unlike sports or rock stars your cultural leaders have the responsibility to model strong character. I teach leadership and character building classes for at-risk students. I know what the students are going through due to the lack of healthy leadership. A strong character is grounded in your humanistic values. Are your politicians displaying humanistic values?  It’s not about republicans and democrats, black and white, rich and poor, or young and old. It’s about you being real and living your humanistic values. By living your values you are you are making a statement of character and acting as a role model.


So, where are your cultural leaders, your cultural elders? Where are the role models of strong character your culture so desperately needs? Studies show that if a child doesn’t have a strong moral upbringing, with appropriate modeling they are more likely to drop out of school, join gangs and serve time in prison. Look around you, what style of leadership is being modeled? Unaware, insensitive and abusive leaders create carbon copies of themselves. Humanistic values, the truth and integrity should be the guiding principle of all leaders. Healthy leaders, courageous leaders model appropriate behavior (strong character, awareness, compassion, humanity, and fairness). The truth and integrity must be the highest priority if your culture is to be guided by its sacred humanistic values.  The more in touch you are with your own humanity, your humanistic values, the more sensitive you will be to others humanity (the opposite is true).


Greed and violence are running rapped in your culture today. It’s a direct effect of the lack of authentic leaders. The immature and dysfunctional behavior of your political leader’s, corporate executives and media personalities is disgraceful and directly related to street violence, sexual abuse, poverty and racism. This trickle down behavior has created a culture of fear. As you read this; the next generation’s character is being developed. They have to deal with the negative effects of this toxic trickle down behavior. Most of your young people are ill-equipped to deal with the negative effects of trickle down behavior. They get sucked in and swiped away by the distractions of greed and neurotic empowerment. You become empowered though your moment to moment choices. Are you watering the seeds of authentic empowerment or neurotic empowerment? Authentic Empowerment is guided by your humanistic values and compassion. Neurotic Empowerment is guided by greed and self-importance.


Conservative, liberal, Crips, Bloods, Christian, Muslims – divide and conquer is one of the oldest political and military strategy’s. Your country is more divided than any time sense the civil war. Is your team winning? It’s about winning, isn’t it? As a child you were told it was about how you played the game – with integrity.  Demarcates and Republicans view one another in the same way Bloods and Crips do; as the enemy. Bloods and Crips kill one another while Demarcates and Republicans only sabotage and try to destroy one another’s careers.  The polarization is so great you see the other side as the enemy. You’re a liberal. No, your political philosophy is based in liberal ideas. It takes courage to be willing to examine your own beliefs. And, it’s your responsibility to find common ground. Appropriate rules of engagement means putting your personality/self-image aside and searching for common ground.


Feel overwhelming? The questions you need to be asking are; what’s your role in supporting the status quo? Are you willing to simply except the status quo as fate? Does this stimulate feelings of anger, guilt and shame? Well, that’s the best place for you to start. Making a difference begins with your own personal evolution. Working through your anger, guilt and shame authentically empowers you.


If the goal is noble, whether or not it is realized is largely irrelevant. We must never give up.                               — His Holiness the Dalai Lama


A number of years ago, I, two 4Aspects staff members (of color) and three student interns (of color) were teaching the 4Aspects Skills for Success class. The class was made up of twenty of the most challenging students in the high school. A female student of color was having a difficult day.  At one point while I was addressing the class, she interrupted and said “I’m sick of you f…ing white people trying to fix us”. My response was “you’re not broken. We’re here to teach and learn from you”.  The class was interested in what I meant by – we could learn from them. We discussed this in great detail. That was the turning point of that class. However, that young lady has a point. Middle class Caucasian teachers working with at-risk students of color need to be clear on their intentions. Otherwise their subtle judgements may sabotage good efforts. They also need to be aware of the message their behavior is sending to their students. At-risk students are very keen in picking up conflicting messages.


My greatest concern for our country is that your political affiliation has become deeply ingrained in your self-image. What this means is; if I challenge your political option on an issue, you take it that I’m rejecting and challenging you. If I say to you; “no that’s a bad idea, you hear me rejecting you and saying your ideas are bad. This is a major source of conflict throughout the world and especially with your children and adolescents. I know that every time I ask an at-risk student to pull up their pants, take off their hoody or button up their blouse, I’m challenging their self-image. For some at-risk students their self-image might be all they have. Dads in jail, moms addicted and there no food. Self-image for the at-risk community is based within their psychological defense mechanism. Having this awareness allows me to approach the student’s with respect and compassion. By approaching the students this way they understand I’m not challenging their identity – no conflict.


In the above quote by Bill Moyers “The language of the media is deception and the language of politicians is to conceal”.  Politics is a reflection of your culture.  The question for you has to be; how do you participant in deception and conceal?  How do you participant in bullying and drama? How can you show up with greater sensitivity and compassion? Are your actions watering the seeds of your humanity or greed? Do you have the courage it takes to examine your self-image? What’s your intention?


It was Gandhi who said “be the change you wish to see in the world.” Your cultural evolution is becoming more dysfunctional due to the lack of conscious guidance. Although you may feel overwhelmed and helpless, there is something you can do about it right now. You may start by not participating in “trickle down behavior”. Answer the above questions and become the change you wish to see. By becoming the change you wish to see, you serve as a role model for others. Making it easier for them.       


“Those who propose to take charge of the affairs of government should not fail to remember two of Plato’s rules: first, to keep the good of the people so clearly in view that regardless of their own interests they will make their every action conform to that; second, to care for the welfare of the whole body politic and not in serving the interests of some one party to betray the rest. For the administration of the government, like the office of a trustee, must be conducted for the benefit of those entrusted to one’s care, not of those to whom it is entrusted….”    —Fuller, 2000





Walker McDonald
Walker McDonald – Photo: Flora, 2010



Walker McDonald is a Teacher/Educator, Psychotherapist and Organization Development Specialist whose work integrates Eastern Spiritual Teachings with Western Psychology and Business Practices. Walker has a deep passion for and commitment to understanding the human potential.


Walker has over twenty-five years of experience as an Educator, Psychotherapist and Organization Development Specialist in the areas of; violence & gang prevention, conflict resolution, truancy reduction, parenting, character building, change management, executive coaching, leadership and staff development, organization development (diagnosis & Intervention), teambuilding and mediation. He has developed systems for helping schools, institutions, organizations, and groups discover common goals and work more effectively together. Walker developed the 4AspectsÔ Skill for Success program to support at-risk students in feeling better about their selves and in taking ownership of their education; keeping them in school, off the streets and out of gangs.


Walker is the author of a number of books; 4Aspects™ Journal Workbooks (Personal, Leadership & Organizational 1996), 4Aspects Skills For Success Workbook I, beyond anger & violence (published 2009), 4Aspects Skills For Success Workbook II, Beyond DivisionTransforming Differences into Personal Empowerment (published 2012), 4Aspects Skills For Success Parent Leadership, Empowering Parents to Lead (published 2010, English & Spanish), 4Aspects Servant leader/Peer Internship (published 2010), and State of Ease (published 2014).


Walker brings a unique blend of intuitive and technical excellence along with responsive exploration to his work. He supports his clients in creating a compelling personal context for change and cultivates the capabilities required to achieve and sustain their purpose and vision. He models the leadership competencies that support his clients in achieving their goals. As a therapist, Walker has worked with many stages of mental illness, and supported individuals, couples, families and groups. He’s worked with schizophrenic children and adults and autistic children, and facilitated support groups for; men, couples and the families of schizophrenic children. Presently Walker is the President of 4Aspects™, LLC and is working in the area of character development, healthy self-esteem, truancy reduction & gang prevention within Denver and Aurora Public schools.


Walker received a Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology from San Francisco State University. He also completed three years of graduate work at the Californian Institute of Integral Studies (Ph.D. program in Clinical Psychology and a minor in Organization Development). Walker is registered with the State of Colorado as a Psychotherapist. He holds Practitioner Certification in: Conflict Resolution, from The Center for Conflict Resolution, Aspen Co. and Neuro-Linquistic Programming from NLP Comprehensive, Lakewood Co. Parents On A Mission from The Latino Coalition, Los Angeles, CA.


Walker McDonald has received acknowledgements from:

  • The Southern Poverty Law Center (placing his name on the Wall of Tolerance in Montgomery, Alabama). For his contribution to tolerance and equality in American.
  • United States Department of Justice (work in gang and violence prevention – 4Aspects Skills for Success program)
  • A number of different schools and school districts (work in character development, truancy reduction, tolerance, gang and violence prevention – 4Aspects Skills for Success program).
  • Hundreds of Students


Walker has been interviewed by local newspapers and radio as well as international radio and internet media. He lives in Denver, Colorado with his partner Flora; they are both actively involved in the community.

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