Producer Russell: If I may, speaking from a producer-director standpoint: Kids can relate to this show. These guys aren't phonies. Kids can spot phonies; they're very smart.
Noah Vanderhoff: Kids know dick. I watch 'em in my arcades. They stand like lab rats hitting the feeder bar to get food pellets.
--Wayne's World, Paramount Pictures (1992)
This revealing exchange from an otherwise juvenile movie comes to mind when I watch everyone oooh and ahhh over the spectacle of many of our nation's youth wetting themselves with excitement over the presidential candidacy of Barack Obama. Sure, there are young conservative youth who support conservative and Republican candidates as well, and I have to admit, I am not too enthused with their input either.
Time Magazine had a cover-story article about the role of our youth in this election, and most of the article dedicates itself to talking about the youth movement for Obama, because quite simply, that is where you see most of the youth action: our youth love Barack Obama. I have previously posted about the overwhelming support for Obama among my 8th grade students, even though they couldn't articulate why they supported him, beyond the fact that Obama is black.
Please don't misunderstand, I am not saying that youth should not get involved in politics - As a young Reagan supporter, I fondly remember the political sparring I had with my Mondale-loving 7th grade history teacher in the in the fall of 1984. What I object to is this insistence (mostly from the left) that we must give so much weight and credence to what our youth have to say. The simple fact that the youth are falling all over themselves for Obama tells you a lot. I appreciate the famous quote that has been falsely attributed to Winston Churchill: If you're not a liberal when you're 25, you have no heart. If you're not a conservative by the time you're 35, you have no brain. It still makes a lot of sense to me, and that is why our youth tend to lean to the left. They are still in the naive and utopian mindset of "Let's pretend". Let's pretend that money grows on trees and that we can save every poor person out there if we just cut them a check; Let's pretend that we can raise and raise taxes, and it will have no negative effect on people's financial behavior; Let's pretend that we can pass laws telling employers that they can't fire handicapped employees, and it will have no effect on the hiring of handicapped people in the first place; Let's pretend that we can enact draconian environmental laws and it will have no effect on our health and prosperity.
The Time article brings up the last time that youth had a major role in a presidential election:
Frustrated by feckless Washington, energized by the unscripted, pundit-baffling freedom of a wide-open race, young people are voting in numbers rarely seen since the general election of 1972 — the first in which the voting age was lowered to 18.
What the article fails to mention is who the youth in the 1972 election overwhelmingly supported: George McGovern! The most leftist candidate (short of Norman Thomas or Gus Hall) to ever run for president.
Being excited about the youth's participation in the political process is all well and good, but attention does have to be paid to whom the youth are supporting - and who they are supporting is a socialist, partial-birth abortion-supporting, neophyte one-term Senator with some rather disturbing racial beliefs, judging by the Afro-centric church he attends in Chicago.
I would say that I hope that Barack Obama is as successful in his campaign for president as George McGovern was in his, but that would leave us with the Son of Cain in the Oval Office instead. What a messed up election this is shaping up to be.
Good Day to You, Sir