Thursday, February 9, 2012

Politics and Kids

Just a few weeks ago my daughter text me and asked what I thought was a pretty important question about a person in politics. She followed that with a line of other questions that immediately had my guard up, I text her back, “what are you hearing, who is talking about this stuff.” She text back that she was in class and it was her teacher. I asked who the teacher was and told her I would get back to her.

Politics are almost painful today. The average American does not trust a politician and it doesn’t matter which political preference you choose, folks just don’t believe most of the things they say or do.

I fear for the kids today who are not taught the art of rhetoric and rarely learn to think from an informed position and not just a sense of entitlement or emotion. We all fall into the trap, making a judgment call on something or someone when we are really, truthfully, uninformed. I have looked at how someone is dressed and disqualified them plenty of times. When you present yourself a certain way you are going to have to expect that. I try to give people the benefit of doubt and God has slapped me around plenty in this area.

Recently I was invited to the Texas State Capital building and the Youth & Government state conference. Youth and Government is a national program of the YMCA that involves thousands of teens nationwide in state-organized model-government programs.

The students write then present bill ideas to a panel of volunteer judges. The bills the students proposed this year were everything from gay marriage to an open carry firearm law. I sat in on the open carry bill and I was very impressed with the debate that followed the introduction of the bill. Kids with, mostly, informed questions came forward and talked about their concerns or convictions regarding the bill. It was eventually passed to a round of applause, wow, cool.

Devon Dollahon, a participant, had invited me to the event. His family has always been interested in the politics and his grandfather was a great man and a lawyer. He was there with hundreds of others kids from public, private and home schooling class rooms. The students inside the capital had on suites with ties worn in the proper manner, girls with conservative dresses. They were all polite, seemed quite well informed and understood the political system. At one point as I looked out over the house floor from the balcony I was choked up, I was so proud of these kids.

Some of these kids will eventually be the politicians that will govern our country. I pray they have an experience with the Lord before they do and that they understand biblical principles and history. Those all combined are what makes for good governing of a free people.

I got on the phone that day immediately after my daughter gave me the name of her teacher. “I can’t believe you called him, I was sitting there, right in his class, uggg,” she exclaimed unhappily. I began to ask a list of questions on the materials, the purpose and the sources. I disagreed with some of his information, other parts made sense after he explained his approach. But all in all, I think his personal political emotions drive his lesson plans.

My daughter and I continue to talk and I rebuke, share and teach her other points and thoughts on the things that her teacher says to the class. It has been great for us and I enjoy the conversation with her. I worry for the kids who don’t get to see both sides of the debate. Most will be forever lost in a one sided and murky ocean that is apparently rising from global warming, entrepreneurial greed and moral judgments they don’t want to hear.

When Jesus said “give unto Cesar what is Cesar’s“ he did not mean to allow the government to do almost all of what it does today, He just meant don’t break the law by not paying taxes. Jesus is clear about our moral, social, personal behavior and character. He spells it out clearly and it is not emotional rhetoric.

This country needs real prayer and some leadership that is going to remove a lot of the grey areas. It needs kids who say yes mam’ and yes sir while looking the adult in the eye with a firm handshake. The boys need to open the doors for the girls, the girls need to say thank you. The kids need to learn what to do as the next generation in life and politics. It matters.

Devon, good job pal, I am proud of you, your dad is proud of you and I bet your grandpa is looking down from heaven, he is proud too, maybe the most.

No comments:

Post a Comment