Saturday, February 21, 2004

Teaching Teens About the Democratic Process

Some lucky teenagers in Las Vegas shared their thoughts recently about attending rallies for John Kerry...

From their perch atop the gymnasium bleachers, a dozen or so Valley High School students peered down on a Democratic frenzy. Mariachis paraded 2,800 people into the school's auditorium, and a handful of state politicians decorated a riser at center court. While most local leaders hardly generated interest among the students, one state assemblyman did garner a chuckle.

"Is there a Democrat in the house?" Richard Perkins twice yelled, provoking the teens to snicker.


My teenage daughter has accompanied me to Kerry events since last June. It's been a great experience for both of us and I hope to see more parents encouraging this in the months to come. The outcome of this election can really have an impact on the lives of our teenagers. John Kerry has offered some platforms on the issues that will benefit our children and improve the quality of education.

High schools should be promoting the discussion of this election in the class rooms and encouraging the candidates and their representatives to come out to speak to our teenagers. This is far more beneficial in raising the standards of our educational system than our current administration's attempts to show some interest in education.

While I think it is wonderful that Laura Bush enjoys reading to elementary school students, I question why the same school system that promoted this, would turn down a request for a similar event from another campaign, that would have reached out to teenagers who might actually learn something from some participation in the democratic process.

Perish the thought that our children be influenced in any way that might benefit their future and perhaps the future of our planet. Today, sadly this mother witnessed a great flaw in our democracy. What message do we send our children when the administrators of our school systems practice discrimination?


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