bradygirl_12 (bradygirl_12) wrote,

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Civility In Politics? What's That?

After watching parts of the Presidential debates I decided to seek out the first one in 1960. I'd seen excerpts from it but watched the entire debate and was struck by how Kennedy and Nixon acted like, well, adults. And that their audience fully expected them to act like adults and to respect each other. If they hadn't, they would have been roundly criticized by every Op-Ed in the country. The campaign trail could be more rough-and-tumble, but a debate in front of the entire country was expected to show two men acting presidential. If  either one had said to the other, "You belong in jail", people would have been appalled.

Of course, civic discourse in 1960 didn't consist of screaming and shouting at each other. Interruptions? The moderator would have squelched that. The candidates disagreed without insulting each other. In-your-face was for hoodlums and people who didn't know how to act in polite society. And get this, the candidates ACTUALLY TALKED ABOUT THE ISSUES!!!   

You know, it would be funny if it wasn't so important that Trump and his right wingnuts are making a pre-emptive strike about voter fraud and vowing not to accept the results if Hillary wins. Does Florida in 2000 ring a bell, with massive indication of a stolen election? What is this, a banana republic? Or just Trump's ego unable to accept defeat whether it's close or a landslide?

Trump vs JFK or Nixon would have been verbally shredded.

Here's a link to the first debate if you're interested: There are also excerpts available.

I'll be voting Tuesday. I prefer the excitement of Election Day, a communal experience, to early voting. Some people will have voted 46 days early by Tuesday! Too much can happen in that span of time, IMO. Besides, it's like TV used to be: you knew millions of people were watching with you at the same time. Why do we stop and watch a show or movie we already have on DVD? It's that human need to connect in a social way, even if your fellow watchers are unseen. They're out there. Netflix isn't quite the same. Of course, if I'm stuck in line for hours, I may rethink this early voting thing! ;)

Remember, folks, vote early and often! ;)
Tags: jfk, rl, u.s.a.
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