Re my post on McGovern, Mike Moore points out that McGovern …didn’t actually fade away; he kept working and working; against world hunger, for the Dems, etc…we saw him speak at the Ludlow Memorial in June of 2008, same day we got Aggie, and, down among the rednecks and the cowboys and the miners of Las Animas County, he was brilliant on behalf of Obama. I’ll never forget it. Mike goes to say We wish for more like him…
I do too, and reading this reminded me of the time I saw Thomas Eagleton speak at a backyard gathering in Piedmont, California in – about – 1974. That was almost forty years ago and, like Mike, I still remember it clearly. He was actually standing on a tree stump – a real stump, which, because it was cut at a slight angle, was not that easy to stand on – and gave, probably, the best political speech I have ever heard. Eagleton had been McGovern’s running mate for 18 days until it was revealed that he had had shock treatment for depression and was forced to withdraw from the campaign.
What struck me at the time with Eagleton was his ability – willingness – to get back up after a huge, public, humiliation and keep fighting the good fight. And, as Mike points out, it was even more so for George McGovern. He took the biggest electoral dubbing in our history and got back up, dusted himself off, and reentered the fray.
Starting in 1998, McGovern served a three-year stint as United States Ambassador to the United Nations Agencies for Food and Agriculture. Later, he worked with Bob Dole to expand school lunch, food stamps, and nutritional help for pregnant women and poor children and continued to work in this area both nationally and internationally. He may not have ever been on the center stage again, but he continued to fight for what he believed. As Mike says…We wish for more like him.