Senator George McGovern of South Dakota, the 1972 Democratic Presidential nominee against President Richard Nixon, would have been 95 today, a moment to remember this great man, who passed away five years ago on October 21, 2012.
McGovern may have been an historic loser, winning only Massachusetts and the District of Columbia in his race against Nixon 45 years ago.
But McGovern was, in many ways, the most principled man ever to run for President.
He ran as an anti Vietnam War candidate, who had been a fighter pilot in World War II.
He ran as a person committed to the hungry, the poor, the disadvantaged in our society. He worked across the aisle with Bob Dole of Kansas to take action to help the most deprived in our society.
He ran as a principled and decent political leader who wanted to bring America back to its purpose, to promote equality, justice and compassion.
Americans instead voted for the most unprincipled and corrupt President in American history, until Donald Trump came along.
George McGovern was my idol, my hero, as a young man in graduate school, inspired by the fact that he had, like myself, pursued a PH. D. in American history, and had taught on the college level before entering politics.
What is it about America that too often they vote for the candidate who is far less principled, decent, and compassionate–as with Richard Nixon and Donald Trump as two examples?
Why is it that we have, as a nation, too often made the wrong choice?
This is something that will be repeated until the better side of our nature finally returns to the basic principles of America, and steers away from those who exploit our fears and insecurities and worsens the American condition!