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Gather Kids Around As History Will Be Made Tonight

November 4, 2008

As I picked the morning paper off the stoop this morning, and looked at the front page, I thought of what the banner headline will proclaim on Wednesday.  Even though every newspaper is the first draft of history, we all know there is history, and then there is HISTORY.   The 2008 election will produce one of those amazing historical nights that require parents to make sure their children witness and appreciate the event.

As a boy I recall numerous such occasions where my parents and family would gather to witness the events that would change the world.  Being in my grandparent’s living room while Walter Cronkite reported on the first man walking on the moon in 1969 is a memory that I will never forget.  My brother trying to convince me later that night outside that the dark shadows on the moon were actually the Americans did not seem right even to my 7 year-old brain.  But that historic night, and the events that brought our family to be in my grandparents home, is now a memory that I much cherish.

A few years later on a summer night my parents finished some outdoor tasks and we settled into the living room to watch the only resignation of a President.  By that time I was already interested in news, and had a good idea of the events that were unfolding.  It was a solemn occasion I recall as we sat and watched the speech, and the analysis by the reporters.  The next morning I recall vividly the sunshine that was streaming in through the southern window, laying square designs due to the window frame on the carpet where I sat, and watched as Gerald Ford took the oath of office.

These many years later those events still linger and I see them as very important points along the path to my lifetime of interest in the world, and national politics.  The fact that my parents made sure I was there to witness history was no small thing.  It made a lifetime impression.

It will be that way tonight, as the first African-American will be elected President of the United States.  In homes across the country parents can insure that children see the next chapter of our unfolding national drama play out by making sure the video game is turned off, the dinner dishes completed early, and the cell phone left in another room.  Our nation is about to take a step that has long been hoped for.  Help your kids recall it as fondly as I remember my youth.

They will thank you someday.

One Comment
  1. November 4, 2008 9:11 AM

    yep. You found the right kid. I am a 13 year old political blogger on the edge of my seat.


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