(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.
Penn State has a large and very respected ROTC program. Go Nittany Lions!
CNN Sr. Political Analyst September 11th, 2008 8:07 pm ET
McCain is in his element with tonight's forum. Public service has long been a theme of his campaign.
Then why did he have Palin mock and belittle Obama's community service? Hypocrisy is the theme of his campaign.
I would have liked to hear me reference the question of the wealthy serving in the military
Laura, I'm not ripping John McCain. I'm speaking of this forum as a whole.
I just don't get it.
When McCain increases the pay of the military, I wonder if that will include women to, or just strait men?
Let's look at Palin take on community service....
I guess a small-town mayor is sort of like a "community organizer," except that you have actual responsibilities.
I wonder if they are going to ask about why the RNC was mocking Obama's community organizer years.....
Being a small town mayor, population 5,000, and governor of a state with a population of
about 600,000 does not in my view qualify Sarah Palin to be leader of the free world. It's
like asking the manager of a convenience store to take over General Electric.
McCain is looking and sounding good. I like the comment he made about colleges letting recruiters at colleges.
McCain says the people are very unhappy with the government and he has been criticizing it for the past ten minutes. Have the Democrats been in power for the past 30 years. Just wondering?
Also about serviceto his country. He had no choice, you automatically had to go and even then coming from a miitary family he would not have any choice. Give me a break
thats cool Mr Schneider, I didnt know he was at the forum..can someone please tell me why Mccain keeps talking about military and service? why isn't he pushing on education? he thinks everyone likes wars like him or what
How long before Mccain mention the word SURGE?
For all of you "Palin haters" I ask what is the problem? She certainly has more governing experience than Obama, the Democratic presidential candidate. Let alone Biden, albeit, none of them have much. However, let's recall that the job of the VP is to preside over the Senate...I love the fact that the minute Palin actually gets media coverage that doesn't blast her, or her family, and their personal issues, everyone gets up in arms...Maybe, if people would listen as often as they speak, we could all learn something about each candidate.
It REALLY bothers me that McCain talks SO highly of service after his "surrogates" and vp nominee just slammed community organizers. Really they were quite proud of their anti community organizer statements at the RNC. Many did not want McCain at this event. He should be asked to explain those comments. They were despicable coming from Palin, Thompson and Guiliani. I don't find McCain to be a man of honor AT ALL but he sure can fake it and he thinks most people are so stupid, they don't notice.. he also does not support veterans through his votes! It is shameful to talk out of both sides of your mouth!!
When did community organizer become such a dirty word?
"Take care of your community." "if you want to change the community environment you need to get your hands dirty, you need to unite and not wait for the government."
That's what I've been told all my life by the same people who say my service is a joke. Now I'm told that what I do, what I do for FREE to help those who the nation have written off and buy guns in fear of, that what I do doesn't matter anymore.
Now this same person is telling me about service.
Joining the MIlitary has always been a means of getting a stabel incomoe in the Urban communities of America. And still to this day when our service members come home from duty or during their time serving for our country they are treated as if less than and not given the treatment that they diserve when they return home. Do more for our troops and veterans! Really honor them.
We need involuntary national service. If not military, a high school graduate needs to serve domestically. Bring back the draft that is applicable to all 18 year olds with no exemptions. This would give kids great experience and keep them out of the job market for a few years and give them good experience.
McCain said "I wasnt a hero but i served with a company of heros"
That line was used in the HBO mini series "Band of brothers" about paratroopers in WW2.
Did he steal that from them or did they steal that from him?
I'd like to see them relate the service needs of the country to issues such as "serive and Job training", "service and tax credit for employers", "service for family hospice", "service for tuition", "service and probation". The opportunities for people to give service are limited to a few establised agencies and faith based organizations. Service can easily be extended to business and families.
Our military is not the same since John McCain served. Their views about everything is different. Do the military want to fight in Iraq indefinitely? No, the military wants to come home and be with their families. To think that the military wants to win is not the objective that keep them fighting hard. The fact that they want this Iraq thing to be over so everyone can come home to their families for good.
What I do not understand is Palin is so strong on the Pro-Life issue and God, yet thinks nothing of flying in a plane and slaughtering one of God's creatures ... for sport ... not survival.
She also doesn't think that the Polar Bears are an endangered species ... and is willing to push them closer to extinction (as well as many more of God's creatures that are indigenous only to this area) so the Big Oil Companies can "Drill! Drill! Drill!" ... not caring what it will do to the environment.
This is who John McCain wants us to trust with our country, should (heaven forbid) John McCain becomes very ill or dies. That tells me he does NOT put our "Country First" and very poor judgment on his part.
I shudder to think how far backwards our country will go if this "team" goes to the White House.
Did Judy Woodruff just say that 30% of current enlistees do not have a highschool education? Where did this data come from? A flat out lie
im a college educated, Americorps volunteer and the government tells me to find my own way to take of me after i have give up jobs in other parts of the country, instead i serve others, tell John McCain, to find a way fix our broken service programs
Roland, you make an excellent point. I think however we need to rejuvinate those social fraternities, soroities and community activist. What the local networks need to do is to advertise more what these groups are doing. Not that they are looking for publicity, but what they do is important. Schneider mentioned that MCcain's use of his experience may work, I think he's off base. Eight years ago I would say he has a point, but not now, not since he's changed his views and is aligned with the Bush doctrine.