There was a health care rally in my town today. Lots of people gathered in the park by the river to hear speeches, rally with their neighbors, and to hear Pete Seeger sing.
Seeger, now 90, was doing his fourth concert of the day.
Things like that almost make me ashamed to be hobbling around with my bum knee.
But this post isn’t about Pete Seeger, or about health care and only marginally about a nice day by the river.
This post is about my son.
I’m not one of those dads who goes around bragging about my son at every opportunity, so forgive me if I do it for a few moments here.
My son is 15, towers over me (and I’m 6’1”) and is articulate beyond his years. When I was his age I was working on political campaigns, marching in war protests, and helping to organize women who were being shafted by the city government.
Along with all the people at the park supporting healthcare legislation there was a small cadre of people who themselves tea-baggers and oppose government intervention in healthcare precisely up to the point where that lack of government intervention might affect their Medicare.
But this post is not about hypocrisy. Or socialism. Or healthcare. Or me.
It is about my son who spent his day engaging those teabag people in debate.
He talked and talked, not at the counter-protestors, but with them. He was polite, he was informed, he was forthright and he was relentless.
When one teabag man said that the current health care bill was aimed at having the government provide free health care to illegal immigrants, he told the man he was wrong and told him to read the page of the bill that specifically prohibits that.
The man’s friend read the page, admitted my son was right, and told his friend that too.
I just want you to know that I’m very proud of my activist son.
I’m sure he appreciates this.
But he appreciates getting Pete Seeger’s autograph even more.
I’m cool with that.