I enjoy watching “Good Morning America.” I like getting a bit of news and fun facts for the day from Lara, Robin, Amy and George. Many times I have it on in the morning while the kids eat breakfast and I make lunches before we rush off to school. And sometimes, it results in some interesting questions from my kids.
Certain questions, like “Mom, do you think Jodi Arias deserves to die?” make me cringe, and realize I should probably pay more attention to what our cheerful morning hosts have been discussing. While other questions, like “Mom, he tried to hit his mother over the head with a hammer? And he tried to stab someone? AND HE’S RUNNING FOR PRESIDENT?!?!?!!!” give me the opportunity to explain how important it is to look for the whole story.
But other questions stop me in my tracks, and make me think, “Here’s a teachable moment. Better get this one right.”
The other day, one such question arose. George Stephanopoulos was discussing the recent GOP candidates and their platforms, and my daughter turned to me and said, “Mom, what do you think the most important issue is facing America today?”
Hmmm. A question for our political candidates had been thrust upon me. And surprisingly, the answer came pretty easily. “I think the biggest problem is there are too many Americans who aren’t paying close enough attention to the issues. They go to the voting booth uninformed. When you get old enough to vote, you’d better know what’s going on.”
In my book, The Chronicles of Kibblestan: Revolution, my wise, drooling unicorn names three things that are needed for a country to remain free. One of them is for the citizens to value freedom.
Seems obvious, right? But think about it. Freedom is so easily taken for granted when you already have it. Every generation needs to be reminded that freedom is not free. It comes with sacrifice, and while some have sacrificed with their very own lives, the least we as American citizens can do is sacrifice a little time to learn about the issues. Our kids need to be reminded that as they grow into voting age, they’d better take the time to learn about what’s going on in the world, besides who the latest winner is on “Dancing with the Stars.”
To maintain a free society, people must value freedom, says Kibblestan’s bedraggled unicorn. What are the other two things that he says are needed to be free? Shameless plug here, but you’ll have to buy the book to find out. ☺
Now I ask, what do you think? What would you answer if your child asked what’s the biggest issue facing America today?