The opportunity was there

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, April 30, 2003

I was able to meet one of the most powerful senators in Washington D.C. at a meeting Wednesday.

The editor at the Star-News, Jeffery Biggs, thought the meeting would be an educational experience for me since I want pursue to a career in journalism.

Sen. Richard Shelby has been in the Senate since 1987 and has worked on intelligence committees and now the appropriations committee. From Tuscaloosa, Shelby said he comes home any time he can because it keeps him grounded. He also said he is a full supporter of President Bush and our troops.

After speaking on several different subjects, Shelby offered a time for questions. I was the only high school-aged person there, but many people

my age complain about having no way to express their concerns and worries about such subjects like the economy and national security.

This was the perfect chance for them to get their views heard by someone truly involved in the federal government.

There really weren't very many people at the meeting. Probably 30 people total. I expected there would be more people there trying to get Sen. Shelby to listen to all kinds of ideas. It surprised me not many people showed up.

It would have been great if the room was full of people to participate in the meetings.

I guess people just don't care much about many issues anymore.

People could contribute ideas and the ideas would be heard by someone who could actually do something about it, if he chose to.

I don't think people should complain about not having an outlet for their frustration if they won't take the opportunity and time to go to a meeting where a United States Senator will take the time to hear comments and talk with constituents..

I do understand why some people weren't able to attend the meeting, with it being held at 4 p.m. on a Wednesday. I know people have to work and some couldn't be there.

I just think this was a shining opportunity for people in the community to discuss the issues that mean something to them, instead of just talking about them with people that can't do anything about it.