Spouting off about the candidates: Barack Obama

By Lance Braud

The presidential election is less than a week away, and I assume most of the student body has made up their mind. If you already support Obama, I urge you to speak to your parents and relatives about choosing Barack Obama for president. If you are undecided, here are a few reasons for choosing Barack Obama.

In the two years I’ve seen him on the campaign trail, Barack Obama has consistently shown that he is intelligent, insightful, and can think on his feet. This is the aptitude that I desire in the leader of my country. He is eloquent in his speech, an untrivial trait considering that the next president’s success may depend on his diplomatic ability to find common ground not just across party lines, but also across the oceans.

Barack Obama’s books and campaign messages have both been about inclusiveness. He wants to understand those he disagrees with before casting judgment or pursuing action against them. This ideology of listening, understanding, and communicating is what prevented a nuclear war with Russia over Cuba during JFK’s presidency.

But as much as Barack Obama would be a great president; John McCain would make a bad president. McCain’s campaign is marred with poor judgment and shameful tactics that do not embody the ideals I want in the leader of my country.

As I write this, a McCain staffer was just caught making up a story that an Obama supporter carved a “B” into her face for having a “McCain” bumper sticker. In order to choose a vice-presidential candidate, he did not choose based on who would make the best president. He instead chose the person most likely to help him get elected. He chose someone who could attract the Hillary voters, and someone with whom the broadest voting demographic could identify. This type of shortsighted goal setting has plagued America for eight years.

Even worse, the physical scars from his much lionized prisoner-of-war episode are still clearly visible. As recently as 2001 he has said, “I hated the gooks. I will hate them as long as I live.” This is a person who can no longer see the world clearly, even if the reason is understandable.

McCain is also the candidate who sang, “Bomb, bomb, bomb, bomb Iran” to Beach Boys songs at his fundraiser.

For these reasons, and others that space will not permit, I am choosing Barack Obama over John McCain. I urge you to vote in this election and discuss it with your parents and relatives.

Note: Opinions expressed above