Wednesday, October 29, 2008
One of my students, Ty, came in this morning and announced that she had just received her voter registration card in the mail. Ty should have graduated last year, but she has some problems with authority and anger management issues and misses a lot of school. Actually I don't even teach Ty this year, and I only had her in my class last year for a couple of months before her schedule was changed. She detested me at first, but, then, she figured out that I wasn't the enemy, and now she thinks I'm her mother. Ty stops by my classroom to visit first thing in the morning on the rare days that she attends school. I guess she was so excited about voting for the first time that she wanted to share her news with somebody, and decided to come to school today. She also wanted someone to explain the letter accompanying her voter registration card. The letter stated what she needs to do if she doesn't have a photo i.d. She has to fill out a form which I promised to fax for her, so she'll be ready to go and fulfil her civic responsibility on Tuesday. She is the change we've been waiting for.
While I was blow drying my hair before school today, my niece came and told me that her ninth grade geography class is raising money for Darfur. They are the change we've been waiting for.
Mr. Al and I voted yesterday. We heard on the news that, in some parts of Atlanta, people are waiting in lines for up to eight hours to vote. Since we live in a small town 25 miles east of the city, we only had to wait an hour. It's hard to even imagine how long the lines will be on Tuesday. Is the turn-out going to be that huge, or are most people voting early? Either way, it's amazing how interested and involved so many people are this year. When we helped with voter registration in August, many of the people we registered had never voted before. Some were convicted felons and, by law, had not been allowed to vote until this year. When we explained to one man that the law had changed, tears came to his eyes. He had a drug conviction when he was nineteen and couldn't vote until now. Can you imagine being 45 years old and participating in the democratic process for the very first time in your life? I think this is a great year for him to start. He is the change we've been waiting for.
Be sure to vote next Tuesday. "Change will not come if we wait for some other person or if we wait for some other time. We are the ones we've been waiting for."