Tunes Tuesday: Are you registered to vote?

Photo courtesy of freedigitalphotos.net

The first presidential debate is tomorrow evening. Regardless of which candidate you plan to vote for  – and especially if you have not decided yet – I hope you will take a moment this week to make sure your voter registration is up to date.

Most states have a registration cut-off about a month prior to the election. In Colorado, the cut-off is October 9th. If you miss that deadline, you cannot vote.

Again, regardless of who you plan to vote for, the only way to have a meaningful democratic election is if we all take our voting responsibility seriously and get out and vote!

To check out the registration requirements in your state, go to www.registertovote.org.

Since it is Tunes Tuesday, I am going to recycle one of the best moments from the 2008 campaign and highlight the seventh graders from the Ron Clark Academy, who wrote and performed the song “You Can Vote However You Like.” If this song doesn’t pump you up about the future of our country, you might need to get a check-up!

You Can Vote However You Like
Ron Clark Academy

Obama on the left
McCain on the right
We can talk politics all night
And you can vote however you like
You can vote however you like, yeah

Democratic left
Republican right
November 4th we decide
And you can vote however you like
You can vote however you like, yeah

(McCain supporters)
McCain is the man
Fought for us in Vietnam
You know if anyone can
Help our country he can
Taxes droppin low
Don’t you know oils gonna flow
Drill it low
I’ll show our economy will grow

I want Obama
FORGET OBAMA,
Stick wit McCain you gone have some drama
MORE WAR IN IRAQ
Iran he will attack
CAN’T BRING OUR TROOPS BACK
We gotta vote!

Obama on the left
McCain on the right
We can talk politics all night
And you can vote however you like
You can vote however you like, yeah

Democratic left
Republican right
November 4th we decide
And you can vote however you like
You can vote however you like, yeah

McCain’s the best candidate
With Palin as his running mate
They’ll fight for gun rights, pro life,
The conservative right
Our future is bright
Better economy in site
And all the world will feel our military might

(Obama supporters)
But McCain and Bush are real close right
They vote alike and keep it tight
Obama’s new, he’s younger too
The Middle Class he will help you
He’ll bring a change, he’s got the brains
McCain and Bush are just the same
You are to blame, Iraq’s a shame
Four more years would be insane

Lower your Taxes – you know Obama Won’t
PROTECT THE LOWER CLASS – You know McCain won’t!
Have enough experience – you know that they don’t
STOP GLOBAL WARMING – you know that you won’t

I want Obama
FORGET OBAMA
Stick with McCain and you’re going to have some drama
We need it
HE’LL BRING IT
He’ll be it
YOU’LL SEE IT
We’ll do it
GET TO IT
Let’s move it
DO IT!

Obama on the left
McCain on the right
We can talk politics all night
And you can vote however you like
You can vote however you like, yeah

Democratic left
Republican right
November 4th we decide
And you can vote however you like, I said
You can vote however you like, yeah

I’m talking big pipe lines, and low gas prices
Below $2.00 that would be nice

But to do it right we gotta start today
Finding renewable ways that are here to stay

I want Obama
FORGET OBAMA,
Stick wit McCain you gone have some drama
MORE WAR IN IRAQ
Iran he will attack
CAN’T BRING OUR TROOPS BACK
We gotta vote Barack!

Obama on the left
McCain on the right
We can talk politics all night
And you can vote however you like, I said
You can vote however you like, yeah

Democratic left
Republican right
November 4th we decide
And you can vote however you like, I said
You can vote however you like, yeah

(SPOKEN)
When I say John
You say McCain
JOHN
McCAIN
JOHN
McCAIN

When I say Barack
You say Obama
BARACK
OBAMA
BARACK
OBAMA

What do you think? What do you think inspired these kids to create something that, in the middle of a divisive political battle, was able to unite and inspire the entire country? Do you think more schools should encourage this type of youth involvement in elections or do you think that parents would oppose this type of activity?

I would love to hear your thoughts! Thank you for reading.

32 Comments

Filed under Culture, Economy, Education, History, Music, Parenting, Policy, Politcs, Role of Government, Social Media, Youth Leadership

32 responses to “Tunes Tuesday: Are you registered to vote?

  1. Parents will clearly oppose that kind of activities. Not all, but many parents think that opening kid’s mind at school it’s the same that teaching them a determined doctrine. To my liking parents are way too involved in the education system and that’s how it’s now somehow failed, the intentions are good but parents should not be able to dictate what should be taught in school, because usually what it’s not taught in a classroom it’s never taught at home and then you force kids to learn in the streets without any kind of guidance.
    If kids were taught politics in school we would be living in a total different world, where voters are not easy to manipulate and they actually have the power to decide. You only have to talk to young voters to see what actually goes through their heads.
    It’s sad, nonetheless the video it’s inspiring and gives you hope.

    • I disagree, respectfully, about parental involvement in the schools. I was a very involved parent in my daughter’s school in New York City, and strongly supported the progressive curriculum that our particular public school favored. I also spearheaded parental action on what I perceived as harmful policies, such as communal punishment for individual infractions; i.e. punish the whole class because one kid misbehaved. I was told they were using peer pressure to encourage conforming, I told them in the 4th grade they can barely account for their own behavior and you’re making them the behavior police for the class?

      While I agree with you on the issues of what is taught in the school, i.e. sex education, evolution vs. creationism, etc., I feel that ALL parental voices need to be heard, not just the small-minded, fearful loud minorities. Sadly what happens in a tolerant society is that we tolerate intolerance. I haven’t figured out how to deal with that…still trying!

      • Hi Margarita!! It sounds like you were an involved parent who advocated tolerance, which is different from advocating for one, standard curriculum and closed minds and conformity. I think there is a wonderful balance of caring involved parents and caring involved teachers that is the magic recipe for success. I will be interested to hear Hugh’s thoughts on this topic! I didn’t know this one would be a can of worms! My favorite kind!! 🙂 Thank you for all your great work with the schools. We need more parents like you and teachers like Hugh and Lis! Thanks again for your comment!

      • Margarita, I agree with you 100%, that’s why I say most and not all. And the main issue it’s that tolerant people is usually more passive, because we (I’ll include myself) think, we analyze and then take action, whereas intolerant people wouldn’t sit to talk, they just want to push their agenda and sadly usually get it their way. Punish all for one makes no sense, society doesn’t work like that, you gotta teach kids that every action has a reaction and they should take responsibility for their acts, I would never support that sort of education model.
        Few people are proactive, they usually address matters that they consider important at that very moment even tho the approach being taken will cause a bigger program later on. We are on the same page, I was not generalizing.

        • I love discussion! In stating our positions, we at least create a starting point for expansion. Sadly, what I’m generally seeing is people stating their position as the endpoint – no discussion. Like many other things, moderation in tolerance is a good thing! We are, indeed, on the same page – even in the same book! xoM

          • 🙂 Discussion is the future of our nation. I think more often than not, we will find that we are on the same page in at least 85-90% of the cases. Thanks for the thoughtful dialogue!! My readers rule!

    • Amen! I couldn’t agree more. Thank you for the comment!!!

  2. Our household is ready, Jen. While I’m not able to vote, my husband and daughter are active voters, and we all educate ourselves on the issues and have lively discussions on what’s going on. You’d think we have the same perspective living in the same household…the interesting thing is that while we arrive at similar conclusions, our individual paths to those conclusions are quite different.

    Great reminder! xoxoM

  3. Great song by the kids! I’m a firm believer that we should exercise our power to vote and I’m ready to vote next month.
    I think it’s good to encourage kids to understand government. When I was in high school, the state of Illinois had a program where high school kids could travel to Springfield and literally use the house and senate chambers in a mock legislative session. It was called youth in government and was a great experience that taught me so much on how laws are created. Too few kids understand how our government really works, and hopefully more can be done to help them use all their powers to shape our world including the power of voting.

    • Hi Karen! That sounds like a great program! I agree, there should be more of that hands on activity in schools! It could really help make the process more accessible for people of all ages! Thanks so much for the comment!

  4. Register to vote if and only if you have taken the tine to find out where the candidates stand on critical issues — no??

    • No! Register to vote by these arbitrary deadlines. Watch the debates. Get informed. And then vote!!! I am all for everyone voting for candidates. Just not for ballot initiatives that are not well thought out and which people do not understand. These types of initiatives have financially devastated both California and Colorado and caused real problems for people trying to govern. I believe in representative government, where we elect people to carry our interests forward and to understand all the complexities of the issues. But yes, VOTE!! And don’t force people to vote if they are uninformed, but don’t prevent people from voting who want to be engaged. 🙂

  5. Guys, so glad … I belong to Club Sweden. Good luck . America !!!!

  6. Vote early, vote often!…oh wait wrong post.
    I’m registered and have not been kicked off the rolls, yet.
    I will start to do my research on the down ballot items over the next month. Oddly enough, I will depend on the Internet and newspaper interviews more than TV.

  7. Dear Jenni,
    I was TOTALLY pumped up by these kids!!!!! I’m not at all well versed politically, but it seems, this kids are just advocating HAVING an opinion….not a certain opinion, right?
    I think it’s good. My Mom talks about being very involved as a child in affairs of the world. I must admit, I don’t really talk to my kids about politics AT ALL.
    THis is food for the thought, because it is THEIR world after all.
    🙂
    Love, Lis
    xoxoox

    • Aren’t they amazing!!!???!!!! I loved this so much last year. I hope we have a highlight or two like this again this year. And I think you can raise awareness about things like poverty and homelessness and hunger without making it super political. But it is good for kids to understand the process, I think. So we can all feel like we can do something!!!!! Thanks so much for reading!!

  8. This is a refreshing post and discussion. As a father of three, we need to encourage our children to learn to think. Let them dissect our problems and figure out ways to solve them They do not carry our biases unless we teach them our biases – racism and bigotry are taught, e.g. As parents, we need to be supportive of the children being exposed to civics, social, economics, environmental issues. We do not need them learning about creationism in school – that is the height of irresponsibility and is an example of parents interfering with education in a bad way.

    Jenni, I mentioned you in a comment in Hugh’s last post. Maybe you can help build a better mousetrap. Thanks, BTG

    • Thanks BTG! I am with you. We should make civic engagement fun and exciting for youth, it seems to me, if we have any hopes of improving the general public’s understanding of the world around them. And it all begins with our youth.

      Thanks for the heads-up on the Hugh post. I have been out of town in WA state this weekend, so have fallen a little behind. I’ll go check it out!

      Thanks again for reading!!

  9. That video is adorable. I didn’t catch it the first time around. Thanks for the share–it made me smile!

    • Isn’t it a ball off fun and hope????!!?? It was so inspiring right in the midst of a a lot of political ugliness. It’s always great to get a glimpse of what the future could be. Thanks so much for stopping by and taking time to comment!

  10. Ah lol … No choice in Australia but to vote in our elections. Its compulsory 🙂 fines enforced if we do not. So its in a way normal for us to be involved in politics from a young age. And we are. The choice of only two parties however is always limiting. We vote for the party rather than the leader who can so easily be ‘dethroned’ by their party. Watching usa politics tho can be very confusing for us. Such very different systems and emphasis. I dont think us aussies treat our prime minister as ‘godly’ as it appears the usa does. But then we only see what the media portray 🙂

    • What a interesting perspective, I never knew that people think we treat our Presidents as godly. I can assure you that no one did that with George W. 😉 I actually have gone back and forth with one of my favorite blogger, Hugh, about compulsory voting. My husband is from Argentina, where voting is compulsory and it does not work well there at all because it seems that politicians are easily able to manipulate the electorate. I am sure it is different in Australia. Do you think compulsory voting has made people more informed there? That is what your comment makes it sound like. Thanks so much for reading and taking time to comment!

      • Interesting how we interpret what we see … Yes we do tend to think Americans place their president next to God…. I guess because we certainly do not. Yes i do think it makes us more informed. Its part of our life. And politics is healthily and heatedly discussed by the majority. we all have an opinion. If we don’t like the pollies or what they are doing we vote them out … literally. Manipulation doesn’t work here as it does in other countries. Public opinion is expressed clearly and that means that the pollies will certainly lose their job if they don’t listen.

        • That sounds like the ideal!! I wonder how we get there from here….Thanks so much for the education!

          • Hard when systems are so entrenched. We bemoan the choice of only two parties and definitely not a one vote system – we work on preferential votes .. ie the lesser parties give their votes to either of the main two. However we still have to wear the decisions of the majority vote .. and thats often a vote out rather than a vote in.

            • You are certainly right about that! And it does seem that elections become more about voting people out than about voting for a vision you believe in. Actually, I just mailed in my ballot yesterday and couldn’t believe the number of candidates for president. Who knew? They just get no air space at all! Maybe that’s part of the problem. Thanks so much for reading and taking time to leave a comment!

What do you think? (Note: please check "follow comments" after leaving your comment so you will be notified by e-mail with replies.)

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s