This blog is now retired. My new site is at: Predictably Irrational.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Let's Set The World On Fire

The morning after President Obama was re-elected, I said to Tim: "CJ was just ecstatic about President Obama winning".

"Good" he said, "she should be. It's her world now."

I loved these words...because it's true. And if you watched this wonderful speech that President Obama gave to his campaign staff, he essentially said the same thing.

Yes. Us older folks still need to participate and care about this great nation but, truth be told, we have less time in it than our younger counterparts. And my passion for ethical treatment of all people is for the next generation NOT to have to deal with the shit I have seen/heard.  The best way to erase racism, prejudices, is to educate and do away with antiquated laws and regulations that support that kind of issue.

According to this past election, 19% of our youth demographic: those between the ages of 18-29, came out to vote. And most of them voted for President Obama. According to The Sophian, Smith College's Independent Student Press:
“The research shows that young people are more likely to support LGBT rights, and the chance to vote for a president who repealed Don’t Ask Don’t Tell, supports marriage equality and has done more for LGBT Americans than any other president is a huge deal and definitely brought people out to vote.” Rich also cited marriage equality, the legalization of marijuana, protection of reproductive and healthcare rights and higher education policies as possible reasons for young voters supporting Obama, as well as the Democratic party’s use of social networking campaigns.
From my own, very minute demographic statistical analysis, my youth surrounding suggests the very same. My teen writing group are brilliant thinkers, who are so much aware of policies and issues going on in the world than I ever cared to think about when I was their age. They are agnostic-to-atheist, so the religious overtones are a huge turn-off. They are huge supporters of LGBT issues and marriage equality, which again, knocks out the religious overtones.  They are strong women *and* strong women supporters (if they are men)...and it's hard to write/say that because it's not that they ARE strong women supporters because, I think we just live in a 'society' where we don't think like that. There just isn't this notion of a woman not making a decision for herself, or treated with respect in making decisions (and I'm being general, not specific to the political issues dealing with contraception and abortion).

The same goes for CJ and her circle of friends. They support LGBT, gay rights, gay marriage. CJ loves that Obama addresses young people. Tim said he came home one day and she was watching the President interviewed on MTV. *She*, on her own accord, *watched* an interview with the President on MTV. I mean, at 14, would I have wanted to watch the President interviewed anywhere? I'd like to say YES, that I was that intellectually motivated then, but I'm pretty sure I would have had my nose stuck in a Stephen King book.

And while these "kids" weren't old enough to vote in *this* election, they will be in 2016. And that's where progress comes in to play. Our nation is progressing: people like Tim and I, for whatever reason, walked away from the "traditional" beliefs our parents tried to instill in us.

Will our kids walk away from our beliefs? I don't think so. Our relationship, as I try so hard to convince Tim, is so much more different than what we have with our parents. I can't speak for Tim since I don't know anything about his upbringing but for me, my relationship with my girls vs. the relationship I had with my mom as a child is vastly different. My girls have the freedom to think for themselves and express it out loud.  They can disagree with me. There are times I wish I had what my parents had so I can shut them up and be right :). They can believe in god or not, although it's kind of hard to believe with an atheist in the house (Tim) and a now acknowledged agnostic (me) who continually blasphemes for pleasure.

But my dad was a "kids should be seen not heard" kind of guy. And Tim is far from that with his girls.  This clip of Sasha nudging Obama? That would be Tim. Because he _listens_ to his girls. He respects their voice, even when he disagrees.

But they also SPEAK to us, knowing they may get in trouble. And sometimes they do. But THAT is what we've taught them: to speak for themselves, think for themselves, even if it means there are consequences.

And it's what I see in most of my friends' upbringing. And I hope that is the future. Progress to making this nation, this world, a better place, free from the iron fist of assbackward beliefs of what "traditional" women were, what "traditional" marriage was, what "traditional" americans looked like, or what defined religion, in this great nation.

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