The expanded version of the March 26, 2008 “Voice of the Voters” broadcast brought to the airwaves the voices of five very enthusiastic ,informed, and YOUTHFUL Americans. All were students of NYU, and all spent 90 lively minutes in conversation with James Strait host of “American Voices”, and Mary Ann Gould, the very familiar voice of “Voice of the Voters” radio.
Student activist Sara Haile-Mariam took the lead, and was joined by Michelle Fiske, who represented herself as being politically apathetic; Kate Lee, a Clinton supporter; Richard Halmo, who braved the lions den as the lone Republican representative and a McCain supporter; Matthew Huffman, Obama enthusiast; and Hela Raz, another Clinton camper.
Rather than provide a lengthy blow by blow, point by point accounting of the interview, it will serve just as well to provide a feel for the overall interaction between the baby boomer hosts, and the newest wave of Americas young voters. In a word, it was uplifting. Just when you are convinced that the forces of fate and malice have successfully conspired to defeat all that has meaning, along comes the new crop of American citizen soldiers...and suddenly...wonderfully there seem to be new possibilities and potentials. The enthusiasm of all five was contagious, and Jim and Mary Ann were sucking it up like a sponge.
While Jim and Mary Ann offered “sage” advice, the team from NYU graciously accepted the offerings and then added their own fresh frame of reference. The importance of using the foundational principles of American democracy as their life long guiding star was impressed upon these astute college level students, and it continuously seemed that they were as eager to listen as we were to speak. And I can tell you that Mary Ann and myself were hanging on every word shared by the politically empowered students. Yes, uplifting is the word for their positive message and attitudes. No negative thinkers in that bunch, and that is good news for us all.
Clearly, if these young voters are representative of Americas newest generation, then there is indeed hope for them to reverse the many mistakes of their predecessors. Part of this process will hopefully come about as a function of joint efforts between their more seasoned voting elders and the new troops. Because of the vital importance of working in harmony with this newest generation during the hand off or transitional phase of giving them them reins of self governance, look for upcoming information of a schedule of on campus voting integrity seminars to take place at various educational venues.
In addition, look for a repeat performance with this NYU team in the fall just prior to the Presidential election. Yeah, we’re anxious even now to hear how their upcoming summer and the totality of the political process may have altered or emboldened their political worldview.
If you missed the March 26 broadcast, the audio is available on wwwdotvoiceofthevotersdotcom, along with links to multiple other show summaries, podcasts, and articles by the author. All brought to you by “Voice of the Voters”and “American Voices” radio.