Recently, I sat down with my 17 year old son and chatted about politics and his belief on current political topics; mainly taxes, redistribution of wealth and the AHCA. I am very proud of him and agree to disagree with how he would like to see things. Like I told him, our national strength is our diversity in this country. If we lose the diversity and everyone becomes carbon copies of one another… we will not grow. I believe we all can agree to this… no one wants anyone else to fail, but everyone wants everyone to take individual responsibility for their actions. As an example, if I am doing my part and you are not doing your part, why should I give what I earned to you who haven’t earned it?
As an example he could relate to...
Take your school grades, I told him (by the way he is a 4.0 student and is in AP and Honors classes)... If, I came to you and asked you to give some of your GPA earned to a student who was failing and you knew that that particular student didn’t put forth any effort, was constantly missing school partying, smoking, drinking, sleeping in class, etc… would you do it? He said no of course not.
What if you were made to do it from the school, would you be upset? Yes, he said.
Do you think that would help people, including yourself to try harder, want to learn and make good grades? He said No and Dad I see where you are going with this (taxes and redistribution as it relates to social programs) and it makes sense.
Now what if it was your choice to give some of your GPA to a student who you knew was trying their best and needed it, would you do it? Maybe he said. EXACTLY, I said. It would be a choice we made not taking from us. (Taxes and redistribution as it relates to giving to charity).
For all that take the time to read the analogy above… my 17 year old got it… why can’t you? It didn’t change his opinion of what party he wants to support… that wasn’t my purpose in teaching him. The life lesson I want him to learn is for him to do his home work on who he wants to vote for. Instead of what most people do; listen to a political campaign slogan, ad, punch line or someone else. I also told him I don’t mind if I am in the minority opinion and the majority opinion rules, so long as everyone has a seat at the table and can discuss political based opinions on things openly… Let’s face it; I am human and not perfect.
I still believe that our vote is the equalizer to all discussion. Right, wrong or indifferent, I informed him that when an individual is running for public office they now have 3 bosses:
1. Their constituents (Majority Rules)
2. Their financial backers/ allies in congress (Quid Pro Quo)
3. Their political party affiliation (Platform Agenda)
All the debate of who will be president, control the senate, and house will be answered come Election Day. No one can accurately 100% of the time predict the future. With that being said, when he turns 18 and able to vote, I asked only one thing of him, just like in school…
DO YOUR OWN HOME WORK!
Yes, being a responsible voter is that simple. I don’t care how much you respect someone else’s opinion… you have a brain, so use your own. Don’t let a party or anyone else decide how you should vote.
Just some fatherly advice, thanks for reading.