The Politics of Parenting
It's an Election Day, so I've got politics on the brain.
About one year ago, on the day of the Presidential Election, I was 7 months pregnant. I had a monthly check-up that morning, and I remember butterflies (and baby kicks) in my stomach as I waited for the returns. I wanted my daughter to be born into a country with hope, and I foresaw nothing but bad things if Bush was re-elected.
When Bush won, I was in despair for weeks. What kind of country would my daughter grow up in? Was it unfair for us to bring a child into such a troubled world?
I resolved to look toward the future. Raising children with good values and a progressive mindset is the only sure way to ensure that this country will change for the better. And the way things are going lately, it can only get better, right?
But today I saw this. And it got me to thinking: how will I teach my child about my political beliefs? Will I actively try to shape hers? What's the best route? A children's books that spells it out? Lectures? Involving her in political activism?
In the end, I want my daughter to think for herself. I don't want her to be some creepy kid who parrots everything her parents say. All I can do is teach by example. I don't care if my child grows up to be liberal or conservative, straight or gay.
If she grows into a woman who knows compassion, curiosity, generosity, loyalty and respect, then I will know I have done my job.