Despite the fact that I still had loads of homework to do, I found myself sitting in front of the TV, notepad in hand, earnestly scribbling down observations on Tuesday night’s first presidential debate. Being not old enough to vote yet, I found myself listening to the candidates’ arguments about issues, but I also was interested in the rhetoric of the debate.
Jim Lehrer was the debate moderator. Although I am not a supporter of either candidate, it was interesting from an outsider’s perspective to see how the debate played out. I was thoroughly impressed with the way Romney seemed to take control of the debate. While Obama was speaking, Romney either looked directly at the camera, at Jim, or at Obama with that unerasable smile on his face. Obama, on the other hand, seemed to take a more passive approach. He often looked down and wasn’t as forceful in his speech. Only towards the end did he start acting more aggressive.
A week later I attended West Regional Library’s culture club event. A lady from the League of Women Voters came in to speak with us about the history of women suffrage and the importance of voting. There was also a mock debate between two volunteers running for an imaginary position in an imaginary world, and the audience was allowed to ask questions on certain issues pertaining to the current situation of the world.
I’m already pre-registered to vote, in contrast with my immigrant parents who haven’t voted once. I thought back to my AP Government class when we looked at a chart showing the percentage of people who actually voted. Certain groups of people, such as Asians, don’t really vote at all. Which really got me thinking about America in general. If there’s certain demographic groups that don’t vote, are they being underrepresented?
And yet at the same time watching the debate gave me hope. I was on my Twitter feed and watching people spazz about the different debates. Because I am a transfer to my current school, it was interesting reading what students from my other school (who were more conservation) versus what students from my current school (more liberal) had to say. But also I was impressed in general about the number of students actually watching the debate. Maybe our generation of Americans will do better to have each American represented in our government.