Opinion is divided. A sampling:
A client of mine is in Ohio. On the trip back maybe 5 years ago I notice a young woman, mid- to late-20s, white, dreads, hippie-ish, if you will, with a small black child. The boy was maybe 5, frail and looking younger, with glasses, quiet and well behaved, and in the midst of wide-eyed wonder at being in an airport and seeing planes.
And, from a small distance, I enjoyed observing him in his awe.
It was clearly a mother-son relationship, which was confirmed when he called her “Mommy” as he excitedly pointed out another plane to her. At that point, I felt a sincere warmness and admiration for her.
Turns out they are on my flight, a row behind me. I boarded first. As he jumped into the seat near the window, pointed to the jet next to us, and asked excidedly, “Mommy! Where is THAT plane going to?”
And she responded, in a warm and loving mother’s tone, “To Houston, in Texas. Where all those baaad Republicans live.”
I mean, come on.
Who ARE these people?
I live in the San Francisco Bay Area. If I’d have seen a teacher at my three-year old’s pre-school wearing an Obama t-shirt, button, or even collar stay, he’d be pulled out of that thing faster than you could say “Green Eggs and Ham.”
I have not been talking to my boys (six and two) about the election or about the candidates. Kids do need to be kids, don’t they and not worry about such things? But the six year old has come home from first grade talking about “Orack Obama” very enthusiastically. So, I’m swinging into action and going to buy him an A-4 Skywhawk and tell him all about John McCain, the good guy that flew an A-4 Skyhawk off the deck of aircraft carriers to fight the “bad guys”.
That should convince him to mend his ways.
I was six when I was taught to say “vote for Barry Goldwater”, nine when I started campaigning door-to-door, eleven when I voted in my first Republican committee meeting – hey, they were just handing out little slips of paper as ballots and I know how I wanted to vote. I spent Vietnam defending our actions and looking at the selective service lottery, though I suppose the war was effectively over before I was in real danger. I defended Nixon until Wiggins bailed out, and I still believe in specificity. Never missed an election, always voted with a conservative viewpoint.
I think early inculcation in values, whatever they are, film over TV, reading over both, hockey over baseball, Sabres (No Goal!) over everyone else, tends to stick.
Plus, it’s cute to have a six year old wandering about saying “vote for Barry Goldwater”, and it might prepare him for a similar disappointment forty-four years later. Might.
I’m probably a bad person but if you ask my 3 1/2 year old his preferred presidential candidatehe will unhesitatingly say “McCain.” if you ask him why, he’ll say “because he loves babies. Barack Obama is mean to babies.”
Remember when Cornel West said that parents should get extra votes for their children? I don’t know if it’s a good idea or even constitutional, but it would have to benefit our side.
It would certainly make it easier to pass pro-family tax reform.