I've been trying to be a better alumna these days and keep up a bit more with what's going on at my alma mater. Tuesday, I was reminded that I had no business being surprised that I'm into politics now. I got a "campus alert email." They just wanted me to know that according to mid-day exit polling, it looked like there would be run-off elections for Student Government President.
EXIT POLLING???!!!! MID-DAY EXIT POLLING???? RUN-OFF ELECTIONS????
for student government?!!!
Yea, GWU's like that.
There's a saying at my old college that everyone there ends up in politics. Granted, I lived 3 blocks from the White House even though Reagan repeatedly ignored us until he needed a hospital. But I was a psychology major with a minor in sociology. The most political things I remember was
1) waiting to cross the street in front of the Law library when Raisa Gorbachev's limo went by and we waved to each other
2) attending a lecture by Abby Hoffman, a childhood hero, along with Batman, and walking away sad at how angry and frustrated he seemed to be at how little things had changed
3) sitting at the window at the end of the hallway in my dorm just enjoying the night sky over the Washington Monument when police cars screamed down the roads and blocked off 19th Street. America had just bombed Libya and because we were the closest college to the White House, we either just became a target or a threat.... still don't know which.
and 4)helping a guy run for student government for all the wrong reasons
Like I said, I was a psychology major concentrating on children to boot. My friend Sarah never did manage to get me to a College Democrats meeting (it's her revenge now that I advise them). Nope, I insisted.. politics wasn't my thing. I was going to counsel children and families. No, no politics for me.
Clinton-Gore 92, Arcuri for District Attorney 93, Cuomo for Governor 94, Dwyer for County Judge 95, Clinton-Gore 96, Arcuri for District Attorney 97, Spitzer for Attorney General 98, Clinton for Senate 00, Cooley for Town Supervisor 01, (Arcuri for DA 01 was unopposed, so there was nothing for me to do there), McCall for Governor 02, Sullivan for County Executive 03, Miller for Congress 04, Murad for Surrogate Judge 05, (Arcuri for DA 05 was again unopposed as was Dwyer for Judge 05) and now Michael Arcuri for Congress 06. I have no idea why I can't remember what I did in 98. And somewhere in there was a Sheriff's race that I can't pin down.
Yea, so no politics for me. Absolutely not.
I can rationalize though. After all, as a counselor, I help people improve their lives. Politics should improve my corner of the planet, however big that might be. It's applied to many instead of one, that's all.
It's genetic too. My grandfather, who I only met once before he passed, and I was too young to appreciate him, was active in politics back in the old world. When I first got active, my mother was pretty angry at me for missing a family trip with my uncle who was visiting from London. She only quieted down after Uncle told her to stop nagging me as I was just doing what their father did.
But probably more than anything else, I do it because I can. I've been assisted along the road.. doctors who kept me alive and walking... teachers who taught me how to learn... even the guy who plows the roads on snowstormed days. But getting all that requires giving too.