Bombarded by Campaigners

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College students at the Polls. www.cnn.com

College students at the Polls.  www.cnn.com

College students at the Polls. www.cnn.com

 

The 2008 Presidential Election will go down in the history books as an amazing race.  The cadidates are none like we have seen before and response from new voters has been amazing.  However, when college students from Bloomsburg University look back at this election, some might think of the overwhelming campaigning tactics.   

Walking through the Bloomsburg Campus for the past two weeks has been very overwhelming.  I even find myself avoiding the walk past the Kehr Union or I speed walk past the Student Service Center just to avoid the nonstop bantering.  Ashley Tharp, a senior at Bloomsburg, feels the same way.

Tharp had class at 11:00 a.m. today and as she climbed the steps of the Union, she held her breath.  She knew a crowd of students would soon start screaming in her face.  She reached the top step and the questions starting coming.  “Did you vote yet?  Do you know where to vote?  Do you know who you are voting for? What time are you going to vote?”  Tharp quickly answered, “After class,” and walked away with her head down, hoping they weren’t following her. 

When asked about how she felt about the constant questioning, she said, “It’s so annoying.  It makes me thankful I don’t live on campus.  I ran between the Student Service Center and Bakeless about five times today and every time I walked by, I had to keep my head down just so they didn’t talk to me.  Once you make eye contact, it’s all over.” 

Tharp wasn’t the only one that felt that way.  I sat back and observed as fearless students walked into the danger zone.  Most of the students seemed to be annoyed by the constant bantering, while other just ignored it.  Many walked by wearing headphones or talking on their cell phones, while others just jetted by with their heads down. 

Getting the young population to vote is extremely important.  We have a say in our future, we can create a change.  However, the way people have been campaigning on campus has to change as well.

It’s terrible when students can’t walk to and from class without getting bombarded about where and who to vote for.  It’s understandable that this is an extremely important election, but let the students of Bloomsburg remember this election for who was running, not by how many times they were asked, “did you vote today?”

 

Comments

comments

4 COMMENTS

  1. I am one of those people who has been who has been campaigning for Obama since the primary. Even though I have been seen as an annoying jerk who has been pestering students,I do not regret what I did. Last night Senator Obama won a historic election and the media has commented that he would not have done it without students campaigning for him and students getting out and voting. Therefore, I would also like you to consider things from my point of view.

    It has not been easy campaigning this election. It can be boring and uncomfortable asking students the same questions everyday. In my experience about 90% of the students were polite to me and only about 10% were rude. I have also been called names by students like “filthy whore” because of what I did. However, many students came up to me on election day and thanked me for helping them vote. I saw so many of the students that I talked in to registering actually voting. I was also able to help so many students register, find their polling place, and get to the polls whether they were voting for Obama or McCain.

    One of the most amazing moments of the campaign for me happened last night at 7:57. Three minutes before the polls closed,I asked a student if he had voted yet. He told me that he had not and did not plan to. I explained to him that right now it wasn’t about Obama or McCain, but about things that would affect him in the future. I asked him to walk with me to the polls as we talked about health care. At the last minute he decided that he wanted to vote, and had to sprint to the polls to get in line. He got into line with 30 seconds to spare and was able to vote. I don’t know what his name is and I do not know who he voted for, but I will not forget the proud look on his face after he had voted.

    I know that many students will not easily forget the people campaigning. I know that many will not feel sympathy for me or feel that I should be proud of what I did after reading this post. But,this really isn’t about me. It’s about the BU students who came out in huge numbers to vote, who waited in line for one or more hours, who walked to the polls off campus, and who took the time to listen and get the information they needed to be able to vote. I hope that BU students continue to vote while in college and after, celebrate the democracy we enjoy in the United States, and try to think of the positive things that happened this campaign.

  2. I 100% agree with Sarah. The article states that people would scream in other peoples faces? When and where did this happen? I was outside the Union all day and that did not happen once. Also the questioning was not constant on purpose. It is hard to remember a face, so yes students may have been asked more than once if they voted and that will happen, but to say it was constant is false, once students were asked if they voted I would let them go and did not follow up or force them to do anything. This election will not be remembered on campus for the so called “annoying questions”, It will be remembered for the record turnout, the kids standing in line for 3 hours to have their voices heard, the 90% of kids who acted in a mature manner when asked if they voted and actually engaged in friendly conversation, it will be remembered for the history that was made and for the over 400 people marching in the streets when change occured, don’t let anyone tell you that it will be remembered in a negative way.

  3. I agree with everyone, but when asked if I had voted I was actually bombarded. When I said not yet but I will later, I was then asked Why not, when will you vote, what time are you voting, where are you voting, do you know how to get there. I said yes, no need to badger me. I didnt lie.

  4. Alright, it is great to see students excited about something and making a difference… blah blah blah. They were doing what they thought was right and I applaud them for that.

    But I cannot understand at all how they are in such denial about how annoying they really were! I understand they have been extremely busy over the last few weeks, but how out of touch can you be?

    Massive groups of students would openly walk blocks out of their way to just avoid being interrupted. Ongoing conversations around campus centered on humorous ways to avoid being “caught” by an Obama enthusiast

    (My favorite was to sacrifice your friend by tricking them into eye-contact with the annoyers. This is like the old saying, you don’t have to be faster than the bear, just faster than the guy your with)

    Again, I am sure many students are proud of the enthusiasm their classmates showed in the last few weeks. But regardless of whether what you were doing was right or wrong, it was soooooo very annoying and we are all happy it is over with.

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