This time last year, we had our pick of 10 Democratic presidential candidates.
Some of us liked Howard Dean, others wanted Wes Clark to win. Some of us just had too many options – “anyone but Bush,” we’d say.
Then almost out of nowhere, John Kerry nearly swept the primaries. Kucinich, Dean, Clark – we had to say goodbye. We weren’t necessarily happy about that.
But now, nearly six months later, John Kerry has grown on us. Maybe it’s because his past anti-war activism gives us hope, maybe because he’s been endorsed by reputable organizations such as the AFL-CIO and teachers unions.
Above all, we have come to know John Kerry as a moral leader with a plan to restore America’s credibility in the world while making the country safer.
While we have faith in his plans for foreign policy – like saving us from the present course of chaos that we’re on in Iraq – we feel that Kerry’s domestic policies are ones that fit the best interests of students.
Kerry is a major advocate of public education. We’re not thrilled with No Child Left Behind, but at least he will fund it.
He also wants to increase funding for scholarships to public institutions of higher learning.
For college seniors, jobs and healthcare are at the top of their lists. Kerry has plans to make healthcare more accessible to those who can’t afford it – i.e. graduating seniors with low-paying jobs.
And it would be nice to actually get a job out of college, which Kerry says will happen when he rolls back tax cuts for the elite and uses the revenue to fund job-growth initiatives, like keeping jobs in the United States.
His plans to return the country to fiscal security will also be expedited by a change in the way we handle the war in Iraq.
Kerry, who knows the harshness of war and wasn’t sheltered from it by daddy’s deferments, plans to decrease our financial burden in Iraq by getting help from other countries.
And since he does not have ties to the Saudis or an interest in Iraqi oil, Kerry will work harder to bring our friends – our fellow classmates in combat – home.
And when they are home, they will be safe here. When the four 9/11 widows who petitioned Congress and the president for a 9/11 commission endorsed Kerry, it showed that those who have experienced terrorism – more drastically than many of us – know who will better ensure that something like 9/11 will never happen again.
We are not na?ve enough to believe that one person can change the world. But we do believe that Kerry’s ideology can undo the international damage done by the Bush administration in the past four years.
We want someone who will not lie to us in order to further selfish policy decisions.
We want someone who will not ravage civil liberties like a woman’s right to choose.
We want someone who knows the basic concept this country was founded on – separation of church and state.
We want someone who will restore respect for America, this wonderful land of freedom and democracy.
We want John Kerry for president.