(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.
Barack Obama is without question the man that this country needs as our next president!
Why is Obama being compared to Jesus? Statements such as, "Jesus was a community organizer" don't make much sense. I think Jesus was much more then a mere community organizer. has Obama healed anyone lately? Why is Chicago among the worst in crime, poverty and just about every area? Obama didn't do much good, if you ask me.
Sorry Bay! I am a teacher and there are failing teachers sure. However, in my own personal experience, most of us are working our behinds off under horrific conditions. Before a child can be taught ANYTHING, discipline must be achieved first! Unfortunately, there are too many absentee parents and discipline becomes a chore. Not to mention that it is hard to educate a child who comes to school dirty and unfed most of the time! Add to that the fact that a man running with a football for a few months makes 10 times what I do is a slap in the face to most of us. We have to fight for a pay raise when we are the cornerstone of the ENTIRE nation!
We should already be on electric cars but big oil and the auto makers don't want us off fossil fuels.
Anonymous, I have to respectfully disagree with you. Being in the military does not make you better than anyone else, and military service does not trump community service. It is like comparing apples and oranges. One of the major points of this forum is to discuss service opportunities that are NOT the military. Everyone should be allowed to serve in their own way, and I am appalled to see such a superior attitude.
We claim to fight unworldly, uniformed, insane religious radicals yet we keep sending them to represent us in Washington!
McCain looks good. He sounds good also and is believable. Obama is talking about dreams that will become nightmares.
looked presidential tonight and Obama looked like a student.
Some of you act like actions comes before words. Both the Repubs and Dems are trying to convince the public. The test is when they get in thats when the action takes place. Getting their hands dirty and feet wet.
I would like to know what specific things McCain and Palin did to help their community. Not talking about from the Governor or Senate's desk. Did they ever knock door to door to lend a hand to people ? Have they tried to help local people get jobs, carry groceries, heat their homes, raise money in the local neighborhood, tutor the youth etc ? Small things like that matter to me more than any amount of years in a suit behind a desk.
Clean Energy Corps! I love it! We are all looking at higher fuel costs. Obama has the experience and knowledge to best bring America the solutions we all need to become energy independent and efficient.
I guess my point was that of course Obama wants to expand the govt with those programs, and of course McCain is talking about alternatives, but other than those predictable differences nothing is different,
Government is the people. Why do some os us make the goverment out to be a body of something else. After all everybody in government is on the payroll. The contractors, lobbyists etc. So why can the people and government be one as it should? Government is suppose to be the result of what the people make it. Not what the politians want it to be.
I don't think today is a competition type of forum. This type of forum is the discussion Americans are looking for. I want to hear what the candidates will actually do for this country and what there stand is on the issues. May the votes go to whomever you most agree. Intelligence and a real plan enables one to communicate their stance on issues, not getting to hear the questions ahead of time.
If she's ready to be President at a moments notice, then why is she not ready to take on the press corp? If she can't handle them without preconditions and loaded questions, how can she handle Al Qaeda?
I am mad, I just remembered that this forum was tonight, I missed John McCain
oh, and by the way Bay, what exactly has bush done to improve the educators....how many years will it take, how many administrations?
The absence of legitamate journalism allows no baseline to emerge for any serious debate. It's as though McCain/Palin are told they can run with the basketball without having to dribble it, and then Obama is questioned about his defense?
Watching McCain sell his soul saddens me.
obama is presedential.... mccain looked old and pastey!!!!
I like the engery ideas. How new and fresh......Thats what my generation is all about!!!! Great idea man....
Obama just made the most important statement of the night. He can inspire others to service. Inspiration motivates people to go beyond themselves and help others. No government program can to that.
Anonymous, don't forget that John McCain didn't want to join the service in the beginning. Flying jets is the untimate, remember 'Officer and a Gentleman'. He got everything out of it; the power, the 'high', and the women. John's was lucky, he came back.
Mr Obama: you are a breath of fresh air for so many people of my acquaintance. We are so tired of "Washington business as usual" and we are voting for you to save this country from further devastation. Our reputation around the world is very negative, HOPE is diminished among the young, we are tired of the lies and politics of too many Republican administrations and you have gotten our attention. Intelligent people like you don't come along more than once in a lifetime, and we know you can correct and treat the disease of politics in Washington. We need a hopeful, young generation to carry this country forward, to recoup the respect which our country has lost and to harness the amazing, disillusioned minds who have given up in the face of the same old formula policies which have made the gap between rich and poor so HUGE. As you say: "a tax code written by lobbyists" desperately needs a good look from an intelligent man like yourself. I am so proud to vote for you in this election. NEVER have I been so impressed with a candidate. Keep up your enthusiasm for the duration of the campaign. Don't allow the usual dirty tricks to clutter your mind. Keep the faith!
Drill Baby Drill, Lets Fight – are we mimicking the people with whom we're at war?
when bush speaks im embarressed. when mcain speaks im bored. when obama speaks i listen. thats a leader
Neither of these candidates stands for real "CHANGE." They are both more of the same. Everyone should vote for a third party, we've let these two drag this country down for too long!