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Dump the Hump

I have a best friend from 8 th grade who I still joke with via texts and phone calls. We were best of friends until I moved from the Chicago area to Va. Beach, Va. the summer between my sophomore and junior years of high school. Over the years, we stayed in touch, lived close to each other a time or two, and then a divide fell between us for more than 30 years. After re-connecting, it’s as if the lost decades hadn’t passed. We joked like we were kids in junior high again, driving the teachers crazy. If there is a period in our lives when we need to find more ways to laugh, this would be it. My buddy and me were talking about this recent election, last month probably, reminding ourselves of the 1968 election between Tricky Dick Nixon and Hubert “Hump” Humphrey, and the girl who sat immediately in front of the desk we shared. Both our sets of parents were voting for Nixon, while it was obvious from talking with the girl that she came from a Democrat home. That’s the way politics usually works, right? Kids end up voting the same way their parents did. Not always, but I’d wager the vast majority of the time that proves to be the case. Same ideals and political feelings are passed from one generation to the next in virtual perpetuity. Sort of like child abuse. At the time, the fall of ’68, there was this phrase being tossed about by Republicans – “Dump the Hump.” Obviously it was intended to show disrespect to the thenvice president, Hubert Humphrey. When we found out that the girl sitting in front of us hated the slogan, simply hated it, and her parents were Democrats, obviously we used it often to make her even angrier. Even then, apparently, her political passions ran high. Okay, maybe we could have been nicer and not said it as often, but we were 13-year-olds bent on chaos, destruction, and driving other people nuts. Besides, the phrase, “Dump the Hump,” had a certain nice ring to it. “Dump the Hump,” “Dump the Hump.” That summer, in fact, was the summer where violent clashes took place – the Yippies (Abbie Hoffman et al) vs. Chicago’s finest, who at the time, could be seen in new pictures using their Billy clubs with wild abandon on the heads of protesters. The mayor,

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