So I got to see Colin Powell speak... and it kicked ass!

Powell came to see the Purdue University School of Engineering on Thursday and although I don’t got to Purdue, West Lafayette, a friend of mine was able to get a second ticket and chose me when the original kid didn’t even seem to care about getting it or seemed thankful that he waited in line for so long.

All in all there were about 700 people there. There were thousands more who wanted in but the Loebb Playhouse only holds about 700 so they couldn’t. We had to wait in line to get in because the tickets only guaranteed entrance, you had to fight for seats. So as we are waiting in line, I hear people shouting. I can’t tell what it is but I can hear them infront of me. As soon as we turned the corner, I could see them. Iraq War Protestors. They were out there shouting at people and saying things like “60,000 dead, when is it going to stop!” and “Colin Powell you have to live with your lies!” What I didn’t understand was why Colin Powell. I mean, if you had to pick a person to boycott, why pick the one dude who knows what war is like, who knows the consequences of actions, who was the most unwilling to jump into Iraq?! But none the less, they got escorted out when they started yelling at people in line.

So, on to the speech.

It was WONDERFUL! He was smart, charasmastic, funny, and passionate. He talked about his life since he left his job, he talked about how he became the positions he’s heald over his life, and he talked about dipolmacy and the future of the United States. He did alot of jokes had an excellent feel for the crowd.

He pointed out some good things.

1.) You never know where you’ll be in 30 years so its better to take as much oppurtunity as you can.

2.) The war in Iraq was based on intelligence that is now known to be completely wrong. We didn’t understand what we were getting into better and when the insurgency started, we didn’t do the right thing and stop it then. If things haven’t gotten better in 1 year, we need to pull out and let them deal with it.

3.) American is still a leader in engineering and education but if we dont’ focus on it more, we’re going to be left behind and dominated.

4.) We still need to be a world leader in dipolmacy. The world still needs us more than we realize. Not everyone hates us but if we don’t change are image they might. We need to have a more open society to foreigners because that is what makes us great.

There are so many other points that he made but I can’t for the life of me remember them. All in all, it was one of the greatest experiences I’ve ever had and I’m so grateful for being there.

I’m envious. I’d like to hear Colin Powell speak some time. I’ve read his autobiography (My American Journey), and was fascinated by his story. I know he comes up to Canada from time to time for various reasons; I just have to keep my eyes open for when he is (a) in my area; and (b) speaking.

Sounds like you had a good time though. Again, I’m envious!