My son, the same kid who a year ago preferred action movies to political discourse has become a one person fountain of political facts. The problem? There isn't really a problem it's just that he's really enthusiastic and doesn't talk about much else. He's filled with righteous rage at the "billionaires with money tucked in off shore accounts" and he reports Romeny's social gaffs with real concern. He can't believe the whole country isn't appalled! I listen and I am happy he is informed. But I am no longer surprised. I long ago left idealism for complacent acceptance. There, I wrote it. My son's voice and latest news updates (he's become a reddit.com addict) have exposed my lethargy. No bumper stickers, half-hearted contributions to campaigns and no shock and surprise with anything Romney says or any other person running for office.
A week ago, mid-humid-heatwave, he gathered environmental facts. He found me with my tea, inside my air-conditioned kitchen-bubble to ask how many miles our car gets to the gallon. I couldn't answer. And after he asked if I knew how much electricity was used to run my beloved air conditioners, I folded. But not before I protested that with global warming, I needed my air conditioners. I sounded like a Kardashian trying to justify a private jet. I turned my savior off and put on a headband to hold back the sweat.
No, my child now knows we could feed the world, we could stop global warming and our free government is run by money not democratic votes from the "people."
"Mom, some people are saying Romney will pick a corporation to run with him as vice." My son, telling an almost joke in the midst of his serious-revolutionary-summer.
I laughed, maybe a little too hardily. I'm hopeful when he finds some levity. I don't want him to become despondent. I point out that in Germany they are nearly all clean energy and I ask if that makes him hopeful? He says it does but that our country is still not making any progress and it might be too late... when he says that I imagine us all disappearing like dinosaurs. I hope he has time to enjoy an ice cream cone before our extinction. When I suggest an ice cream or a trip to the beach, he ignores me and instead gives me an update from reddit.com.
I compost now, leave the A/C off and point out good in the world whenever I can. I am trying to counterbalance the disillusionment of seventeen and I gotta say, it's bad out there...