Sunday, October 31, 2010

Frustrated, Angry, and Fearful Voters

by Pa Rock
Citizen Journalist

Our Pacific daily rag, Stars and Stripes, which is more fair and balanced than Fox News - but not much, carried a banner headline yesterday:  "Frustrated, angry, and fearful voters will head to polls."  The accompanying article went on to basically predict a Republican sweep of the elections on Tuesday.  That frustrated, angry, and fearful headline will have little to no impact on the outcome of the election because, like me, everyone on this tiny island - as well as in Korea, Japan, and Guam - who can vote in the American elections either has already done so, or has opted to blow it off.

The American voters out in the Pacific won't be the scruffy little tail that wags the dog.  The military is still seen by many as being the GOP in uniform, and that image holds true for some of the older members.  But the young people in the military are different.  They are more apt to be open-minded than their crusty old leadership, and they don't fear the new or the unknown.  Just this week, for example, NBC's Chief Foreign Correspondent Richard Engle broke the story that the big survey that the military has been conducting on the gay-unfriendly policy of "Don't Ask-Don't Tell" shows that young people in the service basically have no issues or problems serving with openly gay troops.

The times have changed, and they have really changed since the election of our young and dynamic African-American President.  Barack Obama is a man who inspires the young people in the military, many of whom are people of color.  They like him, they like Michelle.  Finally, at long last, ordinary folks are living upstairs at the White House, and our young service men and women like that.

Elections are about perceptions and numbers.  The perception that the Stars and Stripes is promoting - along with all of the right wing news outlets and many of the mainstream sources, is that Republicans will win big on Tuesday.  They have pumped expectations up to such a level that unless that GOP wins everything, it will actually be seen as a loss for them.  The media has the expectations so high, that many GOP supporters may just stay home - figuring that their votes won't be needed.

Here's hoping that they do!

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