Wednesday, October 17, 2012

George McGovern is near death

There is sad news tonight. Former Senator George S. McGovern, who ran as an antiwar candidate against Richard Nixon in 1972, is near death. His family reports that he was admitted to hospice a few days ago and is "unresponsive".

β€œHe’s coming to the end of his life,” his daughter, Ann McGovern, told The Associated Press. She declined to elaborate but noted that her 90-year-old father has suffered several health problems in the last year.

Because the Twenty-Sixth Amendment, lowering the national voting age to eighteen, had been ratified in 1971, McGovern was the first vote that I and many of my contemporaries had the chance to cast. Like millions of others who had spent years demonstrating and organizing to end the Vietnam War, 1972 was our first chance to vote for the political positions we believed in. It was also, for me, the first of many votes for unsuccessful candidates. While the results showed that the election probably could not have been won, even against Richard Nixon, McGovern was an inspirational character.


β€œThe current dilemma in Vietnam is a clear demonstration of the limitations of military power ... [Current U.S. involvement] is a policy of moral debacle and political defeat ... The trap we have fallen into there will haunt us in every corner of this revolutionary world if we do not properly appraise its lessons."[74][99]


While McGovern is apparently still alive, let's take a moment to remember him, and to rededicate ourselves to working for progressive change.

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