Older men kick around many issues

By M. Scott Morris/NEMS Daily Journal

PONTOTOC – Gray-headed men meet nearly every weekday at Hardee’s, where the upcoming election is a growing topic of conversation.
“One of the things a lot of us folks talk about is gas prices,” said 70-year-old Jerry Bell of Pontotoc. “That’s not really a political issue, but it seems it can be.”
Darwin Walton, 86, of Pontotoc, said he’s not very political, but the Republicans have been more in line with his views than the Democrats.
“For the last several years, I’m a Republican,” he said.
Social Security is on 84-year-old A.D. Ward’s mind. The Randolph resident is concerned today’s young people won’t be able to count on the program when they need it.
“But that’s what they said to me, and I’ve been drawing it 13 years,” he said. “They were wrong about me. Maybe I’m wrong about this.”
Retirement is a short time away for Randy Benjamin, 63, of Pontotoc.
“I’m getting close,” he said, “so Medicare is one thing. I’m wondering how it’s going to work for me.”
Jimmy Tutor, 71, of Pontotoc, was straight-forward about his election aims: “All I know is throw Obama out.”
Buster Tutor, 68, of Pontotoc, takes a contrary view. “We need to keep the health care law. That’s the main thing,” he said. “And deficit spending’s been going on for years. It’s not fair to make today’s young people pay for a problem that’s gone on for so long.”
John Ray, 75, of Pontotoc, sees a lot of push and pull among the nation’s leaders. “Anything Obama’s trying to get going, they’re trying to stop it,” he said.
Don Mallard, 87, of Pontotoc, said he’d like to see politicians move to the center to make deals, “the way President Clinton and the Republicans did with welfare.”
Ray Reese, 73, of Pontotoc, is fed up with the tone in Washington, D.C. “What difference do politicians make if they’re not going to get anything done?” he said. “I don’t understand why everyone’s blaming the president. He’s got nothing to do with it. It’s Congress.”
Jim Reed, 73, of Algoma, said the country’s main problem is too many Democrats in power.
“I care about the economy. I don’t agree with homosexual marriage or abortion,” he said. “I’m against about anything the Democrats do. They don’t have the same values I do.”
scott.morris@journalinc.com