Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Students Take On The Election: SG's Beginnings

I always love these student-perspective stories about elections because it allows me to talk about one of my favorite political stories.

In second grade (and yes that gives my age up for better or worse), it was the 1988 presidential elections. Then Vice President, George H.W. Bush (sadly what would turn out to be the non-complete fuck-up Bush) was running against then-governor of Massachusetts, Michael Dukakis. Dukakis had a snowball's chance in Hell of winning, but that didn't dissuade true Democrats, like Dad Grace, from supporting him. Even if Dukakis himself wasn't a winner, there was no way in hell Dad Grace was voting to extend the Reagan era trickle down economics that hurt so many along the way.

The week of the election, in an effort to educate our young minds about the electoral process and voting (though I don't think I understood the Electoral College quite yet), the school had a mock-election pitting the real candidates against one another in a contest to win the affection of suburban white kids in Michigan. Our ballots were hardly secret, instead we entered our vote with a student teacher who sat at the end of the hall all day with an old Comodore 64-style computer.

When it came my turn to cast my ballot, I clearly wasn't voting for Bush. That type of blashpemy in the Grace Household would call for execution. Furthermore, what Dad Grace taught me about politics seemed to hold true--you should always vote for the person who believed in the everyday working person and not the guy who believed in big business. It seemed fairly simple to me.

I handed my ballot over to the student teacher and he reviewed it. "You're voting for Dukakis?" he asked in a very condescending tone.

"Yeah, why?"

"Well, only one other person has voted for him so far." (Did I mention I grew up in one of the reddest areas of a blue state ever to exist?)

" what?"

"Well, don't you want to vote for the winner?"

I stood there and thought about it for a moment. Then I smiled.

"No, I want to vote for the Democrat."

And, thus, my political future began...



blogger templates | Make Money Online