Now that the remaining presidential contenders have all jumped on the "youth" band wagon it would seem an opportune time to explain why I think Obama was so successful with them.
He engaged them! Pure and simple. In his mid forties, he isn't so much a father figure to them as perhaps a man of accomplishment from whom to pattern aspirations. He spoke to them and listened to them. He did not dismiss them. We will be the better for it.
Maturity comes so much sooner these day then when I was growing up. Look at how early kids are engaging in sexual activity. They're given every electronic gadget known to man. They interact more with video games than people. With either phones or plugs in their ears it's a wonder they can communicate without them.
The one thing they don't seem to be given, because their parents seem so driven, is a feeling of self worth. Validation. An invitation to participate in decisions for their own future. So they don't.
Then along came Obama. The pundits are talking of a changing of the guard. I applaud it. It's time. It's great to see the sixty and seventy year olds as full of vigor as they seem to be.
From a personal point of view, however, I don't find 40 somethings lacking in intellect because they're younger than I am. And they do have experience under their belts.
Remember when we wouldn't trust anyone over 30? If we've learned anything, it should be we can trust someone under fifty.
And remember, too, the campaign is but a sprint. The Presidency is a marathon. Stamina counts. Inclusion counts. Even we not so young count.