I watched some coverage of the Women’s March on Washington today. I wish I had been there. My girls and I wore our pink cat ear hats instead, and I talked to my 9 year old about why so many people were marching. Later in the day, I imagined someone commenting to my dad that he raised a liberal.
I don’t generally discuss politics. I identify as many things, a liberal being one of them. My general thought is that as long as you’re not hurting anyone, you should go about your business and no one should bother you, and vice versa. You want to wear a pink polka dot chicken suit to the grocery store? Fine, as long as you can see well enough to not trip anyone. You want smoke some weed on your day off? I don’t consider that much different than having a few beers, just stay home and stay safe. And keep your agenda out of my uterus, thank you very much.
My father is a registered Republican, though I think he identifies with more conservative lines. He seems to enjoy arguing about politics; I do not. I don’t usually make outward gestures of my political beliefs. So I don’t discuss it with him. Every once in awhile, though, I’m more passionate or vocal or visible about something. He realizes that I’m pretty liberal in all things. So I wonder what would happen if someone made that remark to him, “You raised a liberal.”
Yes, you raised a liberal. But first and foremost, you raised someone to stand up for what she believes in, to take action if she thinks something isn’t right or could be better. You raised someone to respect others’ opinions, and their right to have them, even if she doesn’t agree with them. You raised someone to believe that, with enough will and the right resources, you can make a difference. You raised someone to believe that everyone should offer everyone else equal respect, unless they demonstrate that they are not deserving of it. And that even then, it’s better to walk away or to state your case calmly. You raised someone to see that your way isn’t the only way.
You raised a liberal. Rock on, dad. (And mom.)