Thursday, October 2, 2008

Fair Washington

Sen. Joe Biden from Delaware and Gov. Sarah Palin of Alaska, the vice presidential nominees of the Democratic and Republican parties, respectively, will debate each other at 8 p.m. (CDT) tonight in the Washington University in St. Louis Athletic Complex (the alma mater of me and my bride).

Voters: Watch this debate. Think. Discuss.

I was in my fourth year at Washington University in St. Louis when George H.W. Bush, Bill Clinton, and Ross Perot held their first debate of the 1992 presidential election in the University Fieldhouse on October 11th. Meg and I didn't get tickets, but we did see the president's limo speeding down the Forest Park Parkway near Clayton Road. I now have a nice poster hanging in my office from that auspicious occasion. At the time, I was taking a class from former Senator Thomas Eagleton (who was also briefly George McGovern's first vice presidential pick in the 1972 election) and Murray Weidenbaum (President Ronald Reagan's first chairman of the Council of Economic Advisors in 1981-82). It was great listening to those two engage in "civil discourse" with one another and then turn the tables and demand responses from often-unprepared students like myself.

Ahh...memories. I can still hear the tune of my alma mater ringing in my ears from that glorious morning in May of 1993 when (after 4 and a half years and far too much spent in tuition) I finally received my diploma and left the hallowed Gothic Revival halls of Washington University in St. Louis. Sing along with me now...

Dear Alma Mater,
Thy name is sweet to me.
Our hearts are all for thee
Fair Washington.
Thy halls shall honored be
Throughout this great country
For all eternity, Our Washington.

Those days of youth which
All of us spent with thee
Form a dear history,
Fair Washington.
Could they renewed be,
We'd live our days with thee
For all eternity, Our Washington.

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