May 23, 2019

Inspired youth

Forty-eight years ago when I was in the fifth grade, John F. Kennedy was running for president. I am sure that, as Elizabeth Davis writes in her letter to the editor (BDN, Nov. 6), that I was unaware of the major issues of the time.

I knew we were scared of the Russians, because of the duck and cover drills and the air raid shelter signs all over town. I knew that Eisenhower was very old and that he represented a different time. I also knew Richard Nixon did not speak to me or my generation. JFK on the other hand was (in my mind at the time) a bright streak of light asking people to do something for others. He hit a chord with me and my friends and made us feel the new order was on the way.

Young people are usually not as intimidated by “change” as older, more entrenched folks.

We had a “mock election” in my class, too. It was close (two votes difference out of a class of 60), pretty much like the real general election the next month. Many of the people from that long-ago classroom went on to make a difference, due, I believe, to the power of youthful exuberance over a candidate they really didn’t know.

The youngster on the front page of the Oct. 31 BDN looks excited, happy and committed. As a McCain supporter, I hope that Obama inspires him and his peers to a higher purpose. What could possibly be wrong with that?

Harry H. Snyder III


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