Opinion

The presidential election and doing our duty

When it comes to going to war, whether past or present, no person truly wants to go. We honor and respect every man and woman who has sacrificed his or her lives and given time in any capacity to defend our country. However, we generally hold those servicemen and women who have put their lives on the line of fire in higher esteem than those who have never experienced the horror of military combat.

Simply put, when comparing both presidential candidates, Sen. John Kerry risked his life on the battlefield in Vietnam, while many others chose legitimate educational deferments or stateside military service in the National Guard, like President George W. Bush. Disregarding the mudslinging about the accuracy of their service records from both the Republicans and Democrats, serving in Vietnam, under fire, in my mind, shows more courage than someone who chose to stay in the United States.

President Bush took the safer path through his honorable service in the National Guard. Some, like Kerry, despite his privileged upbringing after graduating from Yale, volunteered for the battlefield.

When you have been on the battlefield and seen the face of the enemy, you know that war is a business of great risks. Having seen war, Kerry has said that he would have been more reluctant to lead our country into war than in the manner that it was done. Not having the firsthand experience of war himself, President Bush may have jumped faster on the opportunity to enter war with Iraq.

Someone who has placed a foot on a battlefield and seen the ravages of war may make decisions with a more cautious mind. Most agree that losing one’s life for one’s country is the ultimate sacrifice. Deciding whether or not to send your citizens into battle is an extremely difficult decision for any president. Whether Kerry deserved his medals or not, he deserves the respect for having volunteered to serve in Vietnam and stand up for his beliefs at the war’s end.

Sam Rega can be contacted at s.rega@umiami.edu.

October 5, 2004

Reporters

The Miami Hurricane

Student newspaper at the University of Miami


Around the Web
  • Miami Herald
  • UM News
  • HurricaneSports

It’s the play Miami Hurricanes fans will never forget — and Florida State fans are trying to forget. ...

Miami Hurricanes fans might recall their favorite college football players in past years dreaming of ...

The new quarterback is usually the ones fans gush over. For the University of Miami, last season it ...

Debate all you want, but University of Miami football coach Mark Richt made it clearer than ever Wed ...

Last year, when University of Miami tailback Mark Walton attended the Atlantic Coast Conference Foot ...

An ACLU report authored by UM sociologists documents racial and ethnic disparities in Miami-Dade Cou ...

Following the summit between Trump and Putin, reaction from politicians, pundits and former intellig ...

A School of Communication associate professor played an important hand—an artistic one!—in World Cup ...

University of Miami law and political science professors weigh in on Trump’s SCOTUS nominee. ...

Research bioclimatologists with the UM Synoptic Climatology Lab counsel cities on how to manage risi ...

Miami junior wide receiver Ahmmon Richards was among those named to the watch list for the 2018 Bile ...

University of Miami junior running back Travis Homer was named a preseason candidate for the Doak Wa ...

Six former Canes competed on NBA Summer League teams, with three averaging at least 10 points per ga ...

Quick Hits gives University of Miami volleyball fans an opportunity to get to know the new student-a ...

The University of Miami's volleyball team earned the American Volleyball Coaches Association (A ...

TMH Twitter
About TMH

The Miami Hurricane is the student newspaper of the University of Miami in Coral Gables, Fla. The newspaper is edited and produced by undergraduate students at UM and is published weekly in print on Tuesdays during the regular academic year.