Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Who Did You Vote For? An Innocent Question

It's very interesting how teenagers perceive how the world works.  Many times if your opinion is going against the opinion of others in a group you are considered not normal so I could see how this could hamper a teenagers freedom of speech.  This in a sense is true for adults too.  As the cliche goes, what exactly is normal and who should really care.  

My daughter posed a question directed to me. 

                            "Who did you vote for?"

To which I replied, "What do you mean?"  "Are you talking about the presidential election?"
                            She said, "Yes". "Did you vote for Obama?"  

At this point in the conversation my 14 year-old son couldn't hold back a comment so felt compelled to jump into the conversation while my snickering husband was left in the background.


 My son, in his vast life experiences at 14, says 
                           "Oh, well look where that has gotten us."                               

I bet you might be able to guess how the conversation further played out
                           "What do you mean by that?" 
                           "Obama and this health care mess we are in."
                           "Please explain."
                           "Well, you know.  First it's global warming and now it's health care."
                           "Oh really, I'm sorry you feel that it is all President Obama's fault."  I actually wanted to say, "What the heck are you talking about?  Seriously!!"  "What don't we throw in the economy along with anything else you can think of."  "Just who have you been talking to?"  

                     "You know, it's pretty incredible he did all of this by himself and in such a short amount of time."

He understood my point.  It didn't happen overnight and it wasn't just one person. Not only that, a lot of the mess we are in has nothing to do with anything except greed. We need more of it right now and the bigger the better. If we reverse that thought the world might even be able to recover.

 I also let him know that he might be pretty surprised how many of his friends may have voted the way I did if they had a chance.  Some teenagers, as well as some adults, do not feel comfortable voicing their opinion on a subject if it may create controversy and ultimately a good ribbing or worse.  It's hard enough to be true to yourself in given situations as an adult let alone during your teenage years.  

My hope is that we could all just recognize that it's okay if we all don't think alike and don't share the same opinion.  Imagine what the world would be like if we did.

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