Christina M. Currie: Peewee politics

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Christina M. Currie

Christina M. Currie's Touch of Spice column appears Fridays in the Craig Daily Press. E-mail her at director@craig-chamber.com

Nine-year-old cousin Isiac is moving to Canada. Or maybe Mexico.

He's willing to walk.

This was in response to the overwhelming Obama victory Tuesday.

When the pundits praised his campaign for how well it involved youth, they had no idea just how profound that impression was.

I've got a couple of young ones who were completely sucked into the political winds.

Isiac has been a staunch McCain supporter since he wasn't able to go to Elitch Gardens amusement park because it had been booked for an Obama function.

He has been on the campaign trail ever since, not just asking, but begging people to support McCain.

He likes the way McCain looks.

My 8-year-old daughter, Katie, is solidly in the Obama camp.

She thinks he's a man to trust.

Between her and Isiac, I'm finding I'm having much more interesting political conversations with children than I am with adults.

Katie broached the subject about a week before the election.

"Do we get to select a new president?"

In the chaos of getting ready for school, that question caught me off guard.

But, always ready to discuss politics, I told her "yes."

"What does a president do?"

Oh my.

So, I explained, as best as I could and in terms an 8-year-old could identify with, which turned out to be more than enough for this type of conversation.

The idea of having a new leader - the change that entailed - was like telling Katie that every four years, she'd have to choose another mother.

The concept scared the dickens out of her.

"Can't we just keep the president we have now?"

Oh my.

So, I had to explain some basic terms.

An economy that hasn't been this bad since the Great Depression.

Economy.

War.

Terrorist threat.

9/11.

Housing market.

"No, we absolutely cannot keep the same president," I told her.

I explained the concept of Democratic and Republican parties and told her what I thought each candidate stood for.

"Oh."

Katie loved the conversation.

"We started talking about one thing, and now it's something completely different," she marveled.

I wasn't sure how much penetrated when she jumped off the stool, smiled and went to find her lunch box.

I found out on Election Day when she and cousin Isiac had their own political debate.

Isiac, for reasons mentioned earlier, favored McCain.

Katie was a solid Obama supporter. McCain, she said, loves war.

Hmmm. I don't remember saying exactly that.

Isiac threw back Obama's economic plan.

"Mom!," Katie yelled, her face stricken. "Is Obama going to raise taxes?"

I'm not quite sure my 8-year-old daughter had any idea what taxes are, yet, she evidently took a clue from Isiac's tone that they are bad, bad, bad.

Both stuck to their guns, and here's what's great about watching children argue politics: They disagreed, but they still were able to play together.

There's another thing that was absolutely wonderful about the conversation.

They cared. They had questions and wanted to know the answers. They wanted to be involved.

Seeing the record voter turnout this year helped to renew my pride in being an American.

And, yes, I'll admit that it has been dwindling.

Still, millions did not make it to the polls.

And, I hope there are candidates who continue to believe that their participation is critical.

Comments

jmiller11 6 years, 1 month ago

Great column!! We could learn a good deal from children! JoAnn Miller

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