10 February 2004

By Heather Disotell
GKO Guest Writer

Few adults and even fewer politicians take into account the position of teenagers when addressing current events of national or international importance. Little do they realize that we, the future of our country, are very much aware of what is going on in the world today. With our access to computers being so easy and unlike generations before us, being formally instructed in their use and capabilities, more information is available to us than any other generation ever thought of. Because of this flood of available information and because we are the future politicians talk about, to and for, many of us are confused and upset over the lack of concern in reality there seems to actually be for us. We do have opinions on current affairs and your decisions on them.

It looks like to us that most of our politicians are rich and tell us what they are going to do, compared to what the people now in office have done. That is easy for them to say! Most of my friends admire President Bush for the 'payback' he has given to those who were involved in the tragedy of 9-11. Many of my friends as well as I believe Our President could have taken it farther and 'cancelled' some of the benefits countries that opposed us often receive from us. Why should we continue to be friendly and beneficial to countries like France, Germany, Turkey and Russia? Friends are supposed to stand by friends we learned that in playgrounds! Maybe when you get older you forget some of those things. I hope that my friends and I will remember friends as well as those who were not supportive or friendly and act accordingly when the situation arises.

With our loved ones overseas fighting to protect us here at home from experiencing terrorist acts what would possibly make anyone think that we, teenagers, do not care. After all, those military men and women seen on television are our brothers, fathers and friends. All of the other wars we learn about, with the exception of the Civil War, took place overseas. This war on terrorism started here in our country and we all saw it on television. It affected us too. Most adults and especially politicians do not realize that. Some of my friends even refer to it as our war. After all, it seems that the way it's going the war won't be over by the time we're ready to take up the task. Moreover, that's ok. This is our country too.

Sure, we're thinking about getting our driver's license, going to the prom, basketball and football games and yes, there is a drug and violence problem in our schools and neighborhoods but don't underestimate our understanding of what's going on around us Mr. Politician. Why is it that we are old enough to go to war but not old enough to vote on issues that affect us?

Every one of us above the age of reason living in Our Country has an investment in our future. Try to think of us as the next generation of politicians and you are teaching us how to perform our duties as such then maybe you will think of us differently. We are watching, listening and learning how to do it better and already sometimes, we have ideas that may be better than what you have to offer. However, no one seems to care. We feel that way.

Editor's Note: The opinions expressed in Romeo 47 are that of the author and not necessarily that of Al Colombo or others who appear in the GKO publication. Direct inquiries regarding it's content to the author. Thank you.

Allan B. Colombo