Howard students have always taken social action seriously. On March 20, 1968, nearly 1,200 Howard University students, including former Howard University President Patrick Swygert, staged a sit-in at the Administration Building to protest the threatened expulsion of classmates accused of disrupting the Charter Day ceremony.
Fast-forward to 2008 and students have moved to political action, forming Republican and Democratic organizations to support the presidential bids of Sen. John McCain and Sen. Barack Obama, respectively. They watched transfixed as Obama became the first African-American nominated for the highest office in the land.
Yesterday, on Election Day, voters at one N.W. Washington, D.C., polling station braved a steady drizzle to turn out in record numbers.
One such voter, Michael Harrison, 21, a graduating senior at Howard University and first-time voter said, “My mother made me come. I don’t believe in U.S. political theory.”
As he waited on line, Harrison admitted that he was a bit jaded by politicians and made little effort to seek out information about where the candidates stood on the issues. “I haven’t researched much information about the ‘change’ Obama plans to make,” Harrison said. “Nor have I ran across anyone that’s not just selling dreams.”
Although Harrison doesn’t feel that his vote alone will have an impact on the election, he still waited in the long line, and voted. “I hope [Barack Obama] wins and although I haven’t followed the election closely, I’m sure he’s uplifting the African-American community.”