It wasn’t only the candidates who put on turbo-powered overdrive in the last hectic week. My kids got in the game.
Saturday brought us to the Obama HQ in Santa Monica. We made phone calls into Iowa that no doubt gave Obama the decisive edge there. The boys grooved on the energy in the buzzing room filled with volunteers, diving into the experience pumped up on abundant bowls of Halloween candy. Were it not for a small case of the stomach flu, we would have been back again Monday after school, Aaron enjoyed it so much.
The campaign talk was heavy among second graders at Palisades Elementary school, with Emmett reporting the following high level debates at the cafeteria tables:
- Friend A said “Romney care means ‘Love of America’ and Obamacare means ‘revenge.’ (Someone’s got Fox News on at home.)
- Friend B said “Obama’s going to win because everyone in China is going to vote for him. I told him, ‘Dude, only people in our country can vote.'” Dude, how’d you get so smart?
Emmett wasn’t always an Obama fan. Even earlier this year, he told me he didn’t like Obama. I’m happy for him to have his own opinions. Curious about his reasons, I asked him why. He explained, “Because he wants everyone to go to school.”
Indeed, my second-grader was conflicted about Prop 30, the measure to raise taxes in California so that our schools wouldn’t lose 6 billion dollars this year. He couldn’t process the notion that having summer vacation begin in April was a bad thing. He couldn’t bring himself to pull that lever, and left his brother to vote with me yesterday, while he went off with his (Romney-supporting) buddy to play Legos.
I’m not sure exactly when he decided to support Obama, but last night at 8:30 he shouted, “I’m so glad Obama won! BOOM!” It might have been the friendly competition with aforementioned Friend A.
The truth is that both of my children can like whomever they want. I explain the reasons I vote the way I do, and I do hope to instill in them my values. But the most important value I hopeto instill in them by bringing them to campaign offices, and taking them with me to vote, is the value of participation. I want them to know that their opinion matters, their voice has value, their one vote can make a difference, elections are important, and that these kids have so much to offer the world.
Next time, thoughts on raising boys to be feminists…BOOM!