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2/11/08

BRISE, AGE 11, POLITICAL PUNDUNT


On Super Tuesday Brise stayed up past 1:00am watching the election coverage. I was astounded that a boy who only turned eleven years old 3 weeks ago would be so interested in politics. He has been asking question after question about the political process happening lately and I've done my best to answer.

"What is a primary?" "What is a Caucus?" "What is a Republican?" "What is a Democrat?" "What are we?" "Can I be whatever I want?" The list goes on.

For the record, our kids stay up until the wee hours of the morning playing video games. We're just odd like that. So, No, he wasn't just trying to stay up late. He actually chose political coverage over video games!

I wondered if Super Tuesday would be the end of it, but a couple of nights ago Brian and I were watching one of the politicians give a speech. Usually Brian and I are alone in the living room watching television in the evenings. Our sons are usually hanging out with each other in our den downstairs after dinner. This night, and for many nights now, Brian and I have had company. Brise has been seated in the chair watching the political happenings with us. He walks into the living room, checks out what we are watching on tv and if it's a politician or a pundunt he plops down and joins in on the viewing.


On this particular evening the speech went on and on and I wondered when Brise would get bored enough to leave.

Politician: paraphrasing here..."I will pass universal health care, I will set a date to get out of Iraq, I will raise minimum wage every year to keep up with the cost of living..."
Brisan: staring at the television, matter of factly, and without missing a beat...
"If he raises minimum wage that will make the price of everything else go up."
I was shocked. He's not only listening to the people, he is understanding what they are talking about and he is reasoning.

wow...eleven...wow
Then came the question I couldn't answer.
Brisan: "Why can't I vote?"
Me: "Because you are too young. You have to be eighteen."
Brisan: "Why?:
Me: "I don't know."
They can work at age 14, pay taxes and be tried as an adult, yet cannot vote. Go figure.

3 comments:

Kristina said...

Aaaah, and so many of those adults don't take the time to understand what your 11 year old does--that for every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction, even in politics.

Catherine said...

I remember having a similar conversation... at 17! It's great that he understands that about the minimum wage. Get that boy a good Economics book! Unfortunately, I can't recommend any. That subject, so near and dear to my heart, gets so darned politicized. Even Econ 101! Thank God for my wonderful teacher for Intro Econ at KU. He made all the terrible teachers after him worth it.

Seriously, though, that kind of understanding of how prices of inputs (labor) affect the price of good produced is hard to find in a college student or adult in the general population.

Shelly said...

I'm so glad I'm not the only one to see that this type of reasoning is extraordinary at his age. Sometimes the mom in me clouds my judgment so much that the normal becomes extraordinary. LOL This is not one of those times.

I was wondering if he just wanted more attention or if he really was interested in watching the politicians talk. Now I know. He's really understanding.

I shouldn't have been surprised. This is the boy who asked me to explain Quantum Physics out of the blue, one morning while he was eating his breakfast. LOL He was 10years old!