One Vegetable I'll Probably Force You to Eat

Barack Obama will be holding an election rally at Metro Park in Jacksonville this weekend. It's his first public appearance here since accepting the nomination to be the Democratic party's candidate for the presidency.

Of course his campaign is about much more than just politics, and although I don't think the color of his skin should be a deciding factor in whether he is elected to lead this nation or not -- the fact remains that his candidacy in and of itself is a historic event, especially considering the plight of African-Americans over the course of this nation's history.
My son is mixed.
Unfortunately, he's also 8 -- which leaves him blissfully ignorant of not only Obama's existence and importance, but of the reasons why this is such an landmark election, especially for families like ours.

This weekend is mine to spend with him, which puts me in the position to take him to this rally -- which I would like to be at not only because of my personal politics and interest and in this election, but I also because I really do think my son needs to see this, even if he might not fully comprehend the significance behind what is going on.
But just try telling him that.
Thus far I've had trouble getting him to understand the president angle, the election angle, the "hey it's at a park" angle, and the racial identity angle.

My son is aware of who he is and where he comes from, but at this age it's not something that's overwhelmingly important to him in his day-to-day life. And he certainly couldn't care less about politics, which is cool -- because the more I stress over it the more I kind of remember why I normally have such short patience for political nerds.

At the same time, I feel like if we skipped this thing to watch cartoons or run around the park it might come back to haunt me in about 10 years or so.
This is something he will eventually be glad he didn't miss.
Come to think of it, he complained the same way before I took him to see his first concert featuring George Clinton and the P-Funk All Stars. Something I think he might just thank me for later.

So yeah, there won't be a playground there. Or video games. Or toys of any kind. In fact, it will probably just be a lot of grown-ups standing around listening to someone talk.
But we're going, OK?

[Listening to:  Red Hot Chili Peppers"Johnny, Kick a Hole in the Sky" ]


Heff said…
Yep, a growing Democrat needs to eat that vegetable, lol !
The Ex said…
That is one adorable kid. Someday he'll know.
whatigotsofar said…
Wouldn't it be wonderful if he grew up into a world where colour of skin became obsolete? Sure, giant pipe dream to end all pipe dreams, but it would be the best future a child could have.

But a part of me thinks that as long as skin colour is acknowledged, the division will continue to exist. Only when we look at Barack Obama and see person will we ever truly end racism.

And racism goes both ways. A person voting for Barack Obama solely based on Barack being part black, and not on any sort of policy and issues, that voter is being racist too.

It's easy for me to say these things. I'm white, I'm racist, I don't deny it.
Werdna said…
Have fun guys!!
unMuse said…
i think if we stop "acknowledging" skin color we will also start to lose even more respect for other cultures.

That being said, no matter what side of the fence politically someone is on, I think the fact that in the span of 50 years we went from segregation to a black man running for president is an important historical point in our history.

I won't be there. Not because I hate democrats or because I'm a republican, but that sort of frenzy always makes me nervous.
unMuse said…
"important historical point in our history"

damn I'm awesome.

I should reread before posting.
Hex said…
Heff -- Basically I'm loading him up with things that will help him be a more pretentious teenager.

Ex - Oh he knows he's adorable already. And he uses that knowledge too.

WIGSF -- There's accepting skin color to the point of not making an issue out of it, and then there's taking pride in your heritage. It's a fine line that gets frequently abused -- While I think it's amazing that Obama is running, one of the knocks I have on his campaign is the way they act like they're not using that angle as part of their strategy (which they clearly are).

Werdna -- I'll let you know how it turns out.

Unmuse I and II -- It's gonna be a madhouse to be sure, but I think it's gonna be worth it.

I'm also a little surprised at the lack of advertising it's gotten -- I mean, McCain was here a few days ago, and I didn't even know about it until I saw the photos in the paper of those yahoos who painted the names of the candidates on their chests.
LadyShay said…
I think it's awesome that you are going to take him. He may not understand it now, but one day he might appreciate it.

Personally I can't wait for all of this "showboating" to be done with. I'm sick of hearing the opposing sides and arguments all the while knowing that in the end, it's really not going to matter who the Popular vote wants as our spokesperson.

Anyhoo, he's too cute!! Funny how the cute kids know it and use it and make us sick and lovey at the same time [my daughter is a queen with that].