Tuesday, August 31, 2004


New York in now gripped with all this election stuff. The GOP convention is taking over my city. Manhattan was much less dense with people yesterday, as many were scared to go in to work in fear of the crowds. Sunday saw lots of protesters in the streets.

It dawned on me that it has been about three and a half decades since the immature, illiterate, ignorant, untutored, and unwashed masses took an interest in politics. It is about time that they started again.

In the Army I had a lot of discussions about politics. I mentioned in my last post that the Army is encouraging voting. Being the older and wiser one in my company, people often thought I had insight in to the electins. Many people simply came up to me and asked "who should I vote for?". I naturally did not answer the question straight out. I generally asked them about their social and economic beliefs and tried to fit a candidate in to that. Something I kept hearing was "Now that I am in the military, I have to look at things differently. NOW, which candidate is best for me?" I had to honestly tell many people that I did not know. There are so many factors to consider, that I am not sure who is working in the best interest of your average enlisted person in the Army.

There was a lot of genuine curiosity. Many of the people were 18 years old, and this rather polarized campaign is their introduction to politics. I feel bad for them. But, to be honest, the military is not known for being the most intellectual segment of the population, and nonetheless, the questions I heard were genuine and sometimes downright thoughtful. It was inspiring. Perhaps there is hope for the future.

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