March 28, 2004

Kerry in 1971. C-Span showed an old episode of The Dick Cavett Show with the young John Kerry debating a Nixon supporter, also a Vietnam vet, about the Vietnam War--in particular the assertion that the soldiers were war criminals. Kerry was very articulate and also quite mild mannered, almost diffident, with eyes downcast most of the time, making it hard to capture an image of him. Below are two images, one showing the glorious 1970s set, sprouting with orange shag carpeting and space age chairs. The other vet, John O'Neill, started off incredibly stilted, reading an opening statement, and awkwardly trying to attack Kerry, but he loosened up a bit toward the end. Seeing O'Neill reminded me of how tough it was for a young man to be an actively political conservative in those days. It was very uncool! Better to be the frat boy, then, as perhaps George Bush aptly perceived.

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