A Three-Year-Old’s View of Voting

vote button

I was all set to take my 6- and 3-year-old sons with me to vote today. What a great way to set an example! Let them see democracy in action! Then my husband, who had headed to the polls on his way to work, texted me to say he was still in line and had bumped into everyone we know. And then I ran into a neighbor who said she had waited an hour and a half to vote.

Suddenly my patriotic parental intentions evaporated. I think it’s fantastic so many people are voting in this election, I really do. Exercise those rights, people! But 90 minutes on line with an energetic 3-year-old?! In front of everyone we know?! I vote no.

On the way to the sitter’s to drop off the kids before I headed to the polls, we had a lively political discussion.

6-year-old Miles: “Are we allowed to vote, too, Mom?”

Me: “No, you have to be 18.”

Miles: “Or older, like you?”

Me: “Yeah. Or older.”

3-year-old Riley: “I wanna vote!”

Miles: “Who would you vote for, Riley?”

Riley: “Santa Claus!”

Miles: “No, Riley, this is serious. We learned about it at school. Your choices are –“

Riley: “Underpants!”

Miles: “Riley!! Listen! You can vote for –“

Riley: “Pepperoni!”

Miles: “No, your choices are Barack Obama or Mitt Romney. Got it? Either Barack Obama or Mitt Romney gets to be president. So who do you choose?”

Riley: “Mitt ‘Bama!”

And there you have it, people. The children — the future of our great country — have spoken. I have to admit, though: Santa Claus seems like a pretty solid choice.

Did you bring your child along to vote today? How do you talk to your kids about the election?