I had the greatest conversation with N~ today. Quite ironically, we started working on an African folktale yesterday that hits on a very current issue. The story, Guinea Fowl and Rabbit Get Justice, talks about a Guinea Fowl (imagine that!) who has a wonderful farm because he works hard and tends to it. Rabbit plants his crops, but never does anything to take care of them. He then becomes jealous of Guinea Fowl’s largesse and blames it on things out of his own control (claims that it must be raining on Guinea Fowls land and not his). Instead of committing to working his land better, Rabbit decides to put all of his efforts into stealing Guinea Fowls crops because he feels he somehow deserves them.
And that is how I had a conversation about wealth redistribution with my five-year-old today. Which is awesome because, well, it has been a month or two since we read
Barack Jack and the Beanstalk and he was getting a bit rusty on the concept.
Really, it is amazing how insightful a kid can be. When I asked N~ why he thought the rabbit felt he deserved the guinea fowl’s crops his response was, “Well, the rabbit had a family and it didn’t seem like the guinea fowl did. So maybe the rabbit needed the crops more to feed his family.”
“So, should that mean that the guinea fowl has to give up what he worked for?” I asked.
“Well, maybe,” he said.
“What if Daddy asks you and W~ to clean the toy room and tells you that you can each earn a dollar for it if you do. So, you work hard and clean it up, but W~ doesn’t. You earn a dollar, but he doesn’t because he didn’t work. Later, you go to the store and both want candy. W~ doesn’t have enough money since he didn’t work, but you have enough to buy two candies. So Daddy takes half of your money and gives it to W~ so that he can have candy, even though he didn’t work.”
“That’s not fair!” N~ practically shouted.
And that’s how I know my five-year-old is smarter than Joe Biden*.
N~ and I discussed the fact that it is always good to help people out, and we should try to serve willingly. But forcing it at the barrel of a political gun? No.
We finished up the conversation later when I asked him if he remembered asking me the other day why we weren’t voting for Barack Obama. He said “yes,” and I told him, “He thinks that Rabbit deserves Guinea Fowl’s vegetables.”
Today I am Thankful For:
- The fact that my son isn’t getting the standard issue government school liberal
- That my morning didn’t end with me being extra crispy. Note to self: If you are going to set a running hair drier on the bathroom counter, close the toilet seat first. Just in case.
- Antibiotics. I’m afraid my ear may end up needing some soon. And, really, modern medicine is just miraculous.
- The Halloween candy is almost gone! Death to sticky fingerprints!
- That Sean’s grandmother actually asks to come over, spend time with my kids, and help with housework. Even when I have conversations like today’s:
Her: You’ll have to put the other half of the load of laundry in the drier later. I split it up since it was big and full of towels.
Me: Oh, you don’t have to do that anymore. Sean cleaned out the blocked ducts. It dries just fine now.
Her: Well, it doesn’t wrinkle as much this way.
Me: I have way better things to worry about than wrinkled towels.
OK, OK, I didn’t really say that last part. I mean, she asks to come help out. I sure as heck don’t have anyone else asking to do that. And when you are a mom of four small kids, there isn’t much better to be thankful for than help. Even if it is concerned about your towels getting wrinkled. 😉
*In case you are wondering, I am not opposed to having programs to help those who need it if they are really working and plan on it being a temporary situation. But this whole, “Paying taxes is patriotic,” wealth redistribution crap? I think it’s insane.