September 11th, 2008
08:20 PM ET
6 years ago

Live-blogging with The Best Political Team

Weigh in with CNN's analysts and contributors.
Weigh in with CNN's analysts and contributors.

(CNN) –On the anniversary of the September 11 attacks, presidential candidates John McCain and Barack Obama each take the stage to discuss service and civic engagement in a forum at Columbia University.

What do you think of their ideas? How does the role of service determine what kind of nation we live in? What does national service mean to you?

Along with CNN Senior Political Correspondent Candy Crowley, CNN Senior Political Analyst Bill Schneider, CNN Political Analyst Roland Martin, and Republican strategist Bay Buchanan, thousands of you weighed in.

Click "comments" below for a look at the entire conversation.


Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama • John McCain
soundoff (4,056 Responses)
  1. Cam

    concerned: I second that idea for sure!

    September 11, 2008 09:25 pm at 9:25 pm |
  2. Jennifer

    Roland, you are the best!! Listen to this man, he knows what he's talking about!!

    I am a special education teacher here in DC, I have never walked away from the kids, their families, their hard situations. I also am a returned Peace Corps volunteer. I've served and continue to serve my country in many ways. Although I have never served in the military, I honor and respect everyone who does serve in that capacity, which is a valuable and different kind of service.

    September 11, 2008 09:25 pm at 9:25 pm |
  3. Todd Heap

    I am so glad to see us talking about the issues and not "lipstick". I'm very glad to see McCain, Obama, and the "MEDIA" getting back on track.

    This should be a GREAT election, not another reality show!

    September 11, 2008 09:25 pm at 9:25 pm |
  4. Joec87

    You should have the oppertunity to go into the military where ever you are.

    September 11, 2008 09:25 pm at 9:25 pm |
  5. Clay

    I'm ashamed by the media coverage of the general election. Major Finacial institutions and seasoned Blue Chip companies are on the verge of calapse and the media's focus is "lipstick on a pig"? Discusting. There's real news that happens every day that effects all Americans, stop reporting crap!!!

    September 11, 2008 09:26 pm at 9:26 pm |
  6. cj

    Again he gives specifics!

    September 11, 2008 09:26 pm at 9:26 pm |
  7. lynn

    The approach is the same aas at Saddleback and shows their difference styles; Obama is having a conversation while with McCain it is all about politics.

    I like the conversation style.

    I also think that many people seem to think that military service should be a requirement for being president. One needs to remember there were no wars when Obama finished his first degree. There certainly was need in urban communities and that was his choice and it shows in his belief in community.

    September 11, 2008 09:26 pm at 9:26 pm |
  8. James Cox

    I can't wait for the first debate.

    September 11, 2008 09:26 pm at 9:26 pm |
  9. Maverick Democrat !!!

    Obama was A Community Organizer (ACORN ) , thur Wight's Church . Google It !!!!

    September 11, 2008 09:26 pm at 9:26 pm |
  10. Taylor

    My question is directed towards John McCain. Don't you find it little bit hypocritical that for all these months, during all the libel and banter that has been discussed, the rapport that you distinguished yourself for the American Public, even your campaign slogan, that your campaign revolves around experience.

    My question is don't you find it hypocritical that you've been condemning Obama for a lack of experience, and you go and select a governor that has only been in office for months? Obama has clearly had more experience.

    But yet, experience doesn't matter to you, does it?

    September 11, 2008 09:26 pm at 9:26 pm |
  11. sue

    Agree...
    example...drs without boarders-are you saying that individuals who go out in the world to save lives are worth less than the individuals who are send out to take lives?
    I think it is ridicules to make such a sweeping response to military as the ultimate.

    September 11, 2008 09:26 pm at 9:26 pm |
  12. Nick from CA

    Roland, you touch on an important point. The problem is not that young people do not feel compelled serve in the military. The problem is that many young people compelled to serve their country at all.

    September 11, 2008 09:26 pm at 9:26 pm |
  13. Penny in NC

    These forums are rediculous unless the questions are asked by the people. This is very evasive, practiced and boring. I would like to see a good old fashioned debate.

    September 11, 2008 09:26 pm at 9:26 pm |
  14. Danielle

    That would be a lot to think about and study to recall in such a short time. Can the really be done effectively. I know I can't. They sequestered Palin for nearly a month before letting her answer one question.

    September 11, 2008 09:26 pm at 9:26 pm |
  15. vic

    i think only mccain stands for the true change..in fact if you see in the past year, in the primaries debating against romney, he constantly and consistently tried to show himself to be a true conservative, and not a mavrick, he showed th ability to CHANGE and is trying to show himself to be a true mavrick.. this is what change is all about people..mccain = change every week

    September 11, 2008 09:26 pm at 9:26 pm |
  16. MLB

    Brian Carlson,

    I believe it is true that ideally it would be that way. However, with the economy the way it is and the wars happening in our world, many more people would be motivated to serve if the knew that sometime a favor would be returned (ex: veterans returning to the US homeless).

    September 11, 2008 09:26 pm at 9:26 pm |
  17. Frank

    I truly feel after watching these two men speak that Obama does offer the fresh perspective. McCain to me comes across as the old guard no matter how hard he tries to convince us otherwise.

    September 11, 2008 09:26 pm at 9:26 pm |
  18. Mike, Syracuse NY

    Obama's answer on why he didn't join is bad. When a war breaks out you can't start from scratch to build a military. You need it trained and ready to go. Hence the need for people to join during peace.

    September 11, 2008 09:26 pm at 9:26 pm |
  19. Samurai Jack

    Do we really want to offer Walter Reed type benefits to civilians lol

    September 11, 2008 09:26 pm at 9:26 pm |
  20. Linear090

    I agree, Roland.

    September 11, 2008 09:26 pm at 9:26 pm |
  21. Bev

    Sorry, had to take a break, and I'm just getting caught up.

    Wonderful on service and why and HOW. I love specifics :-)
    Strong on military AND other ways of serving. Sly way of getting in how the McCain-Bush regime has treated the vets; Obama's got a sneaky side to him that I adore.

    September 11, 2008 09:26 pm at 9:26 pm |
  22. thomas coe

    JOHN MCCAIN HAS NO HONOR

    John McCain's latest ad insinuates Obama is a pedophile!!! John McCain has no honor. He left his honor in 'nam. Every major event in his life since 'nam indicates he lacks honor. Left his first wife for another, Keating 5, now new Rovian lows in his so-called 'honorable campaign.' He calls this business a tough business – a tough business John, or a dishonorable business

    JOHN MCCAIN HAS NO HONOR

    September 11, 2008 09:26 pm at 9:26 pm |
  23. DREW79

    a cop in the innercity is = to military

    September 11, 2008 09:26 pm at 9:26 pm |
  24. Bikul Koirala

    Obama's answers are very inspiring. I like his idea of including the community in everything from energy to military service. The idea of weighing benefits to service is great.

    September 11, 2008 09:26 pm at 9:26 pm |
  25. Quit

    Roland, im thinking about joing the military how hypocritical is it to be against the iraq war but still willing to serve in the military?

    September 11, 2008 09:26 pm at 9:26 pm |
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