I only hope that Thursday night’s debate finally sent a clear message to the undecided and swing voters in this country about who deserves to win the election come November 2 and lead this country back from where it has strayed. Thursday night we saw two very different men standing before us. John Kerry showed us his true colors. He was humble, where Bush was arrogant, he was elegant, where Bush was awkward, he was articulate, where Bush was unintelligent, he was experienced, where Bush was immature, he was clarifying where Bush was redundant, he was concise, where Bush was repetitive and most importantly, he was Presidential and Bush was not.
The first debate of this election provided us with a clear understanding as to the two directions this country can go: We can continue to have a president in office who staunchly believes in the notion of pre-emptive war, isolating the U.S from the global community, and regardless of evidence to the contrary, believes that America’s biggest threat was Saddam Hussein and Iraq. Or, we can elect a president who has proven his loyalty to this country in Vietnam, who will repair our relationships with the United Nations and our allies, and will send our troops the help they so desperately need. John Kerry believes that although it was a tremendous error in judgment to go to war in the first place, he understands that now we must focus on winning this war by getting the troops the materials they need, reaching out to our international allies, being candid and truthful with the American people about the war and bringing home our soldiers as quickly as possible.
We can continue to have a president in office that adamantly claims he knows war is hard work “because he has seen it on TV.” Well, John Kerry lived it in real life. He wore fatigues, carried guns, shot his enemy, dodged bullets, and saved the lives of his men in combat. Who is more experienced to not only discuss war but to wage it as well? Not the man who ducked physicals and used his family connections to avoid combat, but the man who was on the frontline in Vietnam fighting the war and the man who was on the frontline in Washington, fighting for peace.
Bush has been handed things his whole life: an honorable discharge from the national guard, a baseball team and numerous other businesses ventures that were not successful, and four years ago, he was handed the election by his brother, the Governor of Florida, and the Republican leaning Supreme Court. John Kerry has earned every one of his successes, awards and praises. Unlike Bush who will not budge from his staunch ideology, John Kerry is not afraid of learning and growing from his mistakes. He understands that people change their views and opinions as they mature, become more experienced and gain more information. So, I ask the undecided and swing voters, with five weeks till Election Day, who would you like to have lead us for the next four years? For me, there is no contest.