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We encouraged people not just to get out and vote earlier this week, but to take their kids to the voting booth with them. We mentioned that Mrs. Content Guy made it mandatory for the parents of the kids in her third grade class to take them to vote. And we got the following email from MNB user Joanie Taylor of Schnucks:

Yesterday I committed to sponsorship of a program that will be called the Schnucks/Kids Voting Junior Poll Worker program. This is just one facet of a larger initiative known as Kids Voting Missouri, a non-partisan program administered by the College of Education at the University of Missouri-St. Louis.

Besides student education, our vision includes voter registration (nothing new) and voter education (very new) activities at our stores as well. I guess you could say I was inspired by your enthusiasm!

This is a great way for us to provide incentive and inspiration of our own in a way that doesn't require us to take sides on any issue but simply to engage our customers and voters in the process itself. This will be particularly relevant as our metropolitan area's polls change to a new system of voting. (So long, all you hanging chads!)

With future poll workers (and voters), our goal is to make students hungry (pardon the pun) for the day when they, too, can actually participate in the process. In the meantime, how cool will it be to have STUDENTS helping to educate and motivate ADULTS about a privilege that most adults probably take for granted!?!

I'll keep you posted if you are interested. It will obviously be more timely about a year from now but we're planning ahead.

We’re flattered by your comments, and are very interested in how this program works out. It is the best kind of community activism.

We reported yesterday that former President Bill Clinton has drawn the wrath of an activist group called the Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood for the anti-childhood obesity initiative sponsored by his charitable foundation. The reason: Clinton has partnered with media company Viacom in the initiative, hoping that its ownership of the cable channel Nickelodeon will help create synergies that can influence children’s food consumption habits. The problem is that Viacom has been identified by the group as the enemy because it is challenging a Federal Communications Commission (FCC) rule that would limit marketing to children. In addition, Nickelodeon gets a lot of marketing and advertising dollars from snack and soft drink companies – all of which are not looked upon with affection by the activist group.

Our comment: Does it strike anyone else as a tad ironic that a man known for his enormous appetites is working to help young people control theirs?

We were just kidding around, and certainly weren’t being critical of Clinton. But a number of MNB users suggested that we were out of line.

MNB user Evan J. Zobel wrote:

In case you haven't seen him lately, he has trimmed down as a result of dieting and exercise. Also, what person doesn't occasionally exhibit an "enormous appetite" in the same month with the Thanksgiving holiday?

Clinton has done an incredible job with his humanitarian relief work and getting health issues in the open especially regarding good health and exercise to prevent heart issues.

MNB user Janice Gates wrote:

I have a Republican (shudder) son whose favorite comment about me is to say “She voted for Clinton – twice.”

Yup, guilty. Appetites aside the man is Smart. I would think that with his little gray cells he recognizes where his problems started, where they might have been helped, and, now that he has the time and the wallet, he’d like to make a difference. What better way than based on his own experience / background? I’ve never had the opportunity to meet him (rats) but I’ve heard that, in person, he is incredibly dynamic. I wager most teenagers today are vaguely unaware of his personal problems, which would - to me – make him a much better role model than 98% of their current role models. I don’t even want to list the creatures that might be considered “role models” – way too scary. Yup, a charismatic ex-president who wants to help young people certainly trumps that group.

Another MNB user chimed in:

Who better to help than someone who has been there? It reminds me of the story Leo on “West Wing” told Josh about the man in the hole who was yelling for someone to help him get out. A passing doctor threw down a prescription and went on. A passing priest threw down a prayer and went on. A friend came by and jumped in the hole because, he told the guy who needed help, “I've been here before and know the way out.”

And MNB user Neil A. Bourjaily wrote:

Confrontation with one's own mortality often induces wisdom, which can, in turn, induce new decision making processes that appear to contradict one's previous lifestyle. Maybe he just grew up.
KC's View: