Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Changing a Vote

Today's NHBPM prompt is to write about how I stay mindful. Here's my take.

Yesterday, when we went to vote, hubby and I canceled out each other's votes. I find this irritating (big surprise), but it's not actually the point of this post. Nor is a discussion of politics specifically. I'm sure it wouldn't be hard to guess where my allegiances lie. But again, that's not the point today.

After we left the voting prescient yesterday, we were discussing the whole thing. The kid (unprompted) said, "Momma, don't worry. I changed Poppa's vote for that silly Romney guy to Barack Obama, when he wasn't looking". We all cracked up about this and then baby E started yelling out "Barack Obama, Barack Obama" over and over. I have smart boys, but again, not the point today.

So, I posted this exchange later on FB and a friend posted a comment that made me think, and inspired this post. Here's the FB conversation that ensued.

Friend - On a more serious, non-political note, it must be so cool for them (especially the kid) to see a black man in charge of the nation. Now we just need a women for all the little girls.
Me - You know, I don't think he's really connected to that as of yet. I await the day he does. And - for all of us "little girls" - a day when there's a women for us to look up to, too.
F - That's true; it's just his 'normal' since this is really the only President he's ever known. But having that sense of normal is really good.
M - I agree completely. 4 years ago I had that same thought and hope. As we were leaving today, Hubby said, "Kid, do you know that a long time ago only men were allowed to vote?". The kid looked at him like he was crazy. I pointed out that only people with skin color like mine and hubby's were also allowed to vote. He thought it preposterous. I love that a "brown" (as he says) president is also his normal.

In no way would I advocate for voting for (or against, of course) someone because of his or her race - or ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, etc... But, it means a great deal to me that for my black sons, having a president of their color will be normal to them.

Because here's the thing - politicians should resemble the people they represent. We should all have politicians who look like us as well as represent the beliefs we hold.

Why is that important? Well, for a plethora of reasons. But, right now, it's important to me because I want my children to know that anyone truly can become the president of the United States. I want my children to know that not only white men have the ability to "run" our country. I want them to have people who look like them to look up to, particularly in the most powerful position in our country.

Then again, the more cynical side of me thinks that our current politicians do, in fact, mirror the population of people they actually represent (white, upper class men). But I'm trying to not be so cynical, at least for today.

Also, I, too, await the day when the "little girl" in me has a women Commander in Chief to look up to.

Today's Lesson: Lots of people who are more eloquent than me have addressed this same issue. I appreciate living in a place where I can still say it. Even if it's unpopular. Even if I bumble over it and don't make a whole lot of sense.

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