For our feature on student responses to the State of the Union Address on page three, we roamed the Campus Center and interviewed students that we saw studying.
It was prime studying time.
There were groups of students lounging all over the building.
Yet finding four students with a response was remarkably hard.
We kind of just don’t care.
The State of the Union is the president’s address to Congress.
But also to the rest of the nation.
It’s historically a speech in which he outlines his successes in the past year.
He discusses his plans for going forward.
He offers Americans some placating axioms about diplomacy and bipartisanship and the American Dream.
We should care, shouldn’t we?
Policy is outlined in the State of the Union.
Political deals and diplomatic relationships are alluded to.
Heck, Obama even gave dates for withdrawal from Iraq and Afghanistan.
But we can’t seem to bring ourselves to care.
True, a good sixty or so students showed up at the watch party held at Grounds For Change on Tuesday night.
And there are absolutely politically active students who feel strongly about the speech and its policy implications.
But where was Obama’s rousing rhetoric?
Where did he address us, the youth, the people who can’t “remember a time when finding a good job meant showing up at a nearby factory or a business downtown”?
The one time he spoke to us, he implored us to serve our country by becoming teachers.
Obama, the youth vote supported you.
And you’ve been letting us down for a quite some time.
We feel duped by the State of the Union.
It’s emotional appeal.
It’s vague, arbitrary words.
What will you actually do?
Maybe we should’ve watched your speech on Tuesday, rather than finding snippets and soundbytes on Facebook and Twitter.
But why watch a speech that’s tailored to our parents?
Why listen to a man who seems to have long since forgotten we’re even in the room?
Many of us are going to graduate into the weak economy.
For our adult lives haven’t known anything but austerity and uncertainty.
Many of us already believe in the social crusades you tout as accomplishments.
Most of us want to see more.
So, Obama, you once enthralled and captivated us a long time ago.
But forgive us if we’ve become a bit bored with what you’ve got to say.