Obama came to Youngstown State University to speak to a crowd of 6000 today. I was down in the pit with a couple of friends, about ten feet from the stage, and had a good view of him. Took some pictures (and also some video, but I held the camera up and down instead of side to side, and am still trying to figure out how I can flip it so I can share with you all–if anyone knows how, please send me instructions and advice in an e-mail!). Anyway, Obama was his usual inspirational self, and the crowd adored him, as it seems they do everywhere he goes. On my way out of the rally, I was stopped by a reporter from the Chicago Tribune, and interviewed about what I thought of Obama and his ideas for Youngstown. I was supportive, but in my own usual manner demanded more than I heard. I don’t want this area to find itself just another manufacturing region again, like it was. I want green jobs, and a creative economy, and investment in education for the rural and urban poor. I want a community college for this valley. Bringing manufacturing jobs here will help the economy in that it’ll put people to work, but manufacturing made this town an industrial wasteland in the past, and we still have environmental problems because of it–lots of brownfields to be turned green in the future, is what I’d like to see–but it’s pretty much being on key if a politician comes to a non-working working class town and tells them they’ll bring working class jobs back to their region. I, on the other hand, want something better for us. If you read the Chicago Tribune tomorrow and I’m quoted in there somewhere, give me a shout out to let me know!
Here are a couple of photos that I think came out nice. Isn’t it strange how public figures really do look like they do on TV and in photos?