Features, Opinion, Parenting, Politics

David Cameron is a Poo Head

“David Cameron is a bad man.  He is on the blue team and they are nasty and don’t like sharing or looking after poorly people or people who don’t have jobs.  He wants to shut down the surestart and the library because he is rich and doesn’t like them.  He is a poo head.”

OK, so it isn’t exactly Polly Toynbee, but that is my four year old daughter’s take on politics.  She knows a little bit about political parties (or the red, blue and yellow teams, as she calls them), and a little bit about unions and strikes.  She p4yo and her Dad on the N30 march carrying a david cameron stop it homemade placardlays at being a suffragette and she loved going to the Durham Big Meeting earlier this year.   She is, most probably, more politically aware than many adults.

Yet it is unavoidable that she is getting a biased view – both me and my husband are left wing, the newspaper in the house is the Guardian and she has been taken on marches against cuts and met the local Labour MP and councillors.  While she is pottering about the house doing four year old things, she will have overheard left wing conversations, and recently she asked to decorate her biscuits with hammers and sickles, because she liked her Daddy’s t shirt.  Even her school has a banner that they bring out for local events to march with the old mining union banners.

Occasionally, this troubles me.  Am I being a bad parent by encouraging this at such a very young age?  Am I simply storing up trouble for the future, when she will rebel and become some kind of massive Tory?

With a politically aware family, though, I’m not even sure how we could avoid explaining things, at least on a very basic level.  We have always said that we will try our best to answer questions from our children, and that we will encourage curiosity, and she is constantly learning, like all small children.  Short of hiding the newspapers and books, turning off the radio and TV and sending her to a babysitter for every march and event, she is going to notice politics, and it is going to be a biased view.  Even the least political families will have to explain things like the teachers being on strike and the concept of voting, we have just gone a little further.

Just as religious families bring their children up in their value system, so we do the same.  Of course, we tell her that there are other ways of thinking, and that people have reasons for thinking like that and they might not just be bad, but she puts her own spin on things.  We have the luxury at the moment of not being totally immersed in immediate political issues, unlike the people who lived in our town during the miner’s strike, but I do think it is vitally important that children grow up to understand how politics affects our lives.

Plus, David Cameron IS a poo head.

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About Alicia J Duffy

All purpose northern lefty guardian reading feminist single mum.

Discussion

11 thoughts on “David Cameron is a Poo Head

  1. He so IS a poohead 😀

    I laughed out loud when I read that blog post title. I believe that kids get it right so often. I mean, it’s not like his head is actually made of poo, but the words and thoughts that come from it smell just as bad.

    I’m so immature. It’s great that your daughter is taking such an interest in politics. So, she might become a raging Tory later, but at least she will have seen both sides of the coin and won’t just unthinkingly accept other people’s viewpoints.

    Posted by LittleMe | December 6, 2011, 2:40 pm
  2. Children don’t filter and usually see right to the core of the matter.

    Posted by Dawn S | December 6, 2011, 3:44 pm
  3. I might not support the same team as your little ‘un but i totally agree with educating kids as best we can in the importance of being politically involved. I think it’s great to get kids’ opinions on what are traditionally deemed adult political issues and often it’s in trying to explain things as simply as possible for them that you truly come to understand the issue and the roots of your own bias.

    I’m not sure I would take my own children to political events but I guess if they asked and wanted to be involved, as yours clearly do, then where’s the harm in fostering that sense of community action and social responsibility in them while you still have the influence to do so.

    Posted by Kait Leeming (@Eternal_minor) | December 6, 2011, 6:36 pm
  4. It’s a very good idea to involve children in politics, after all, they are the voters of the future. I take my soon to be five year old to demos and marches, as it gives me an oppertunity to educate him about why the event is happening, and what the people want to change. Children are naturally open and inquisitive, and giving them a head start in learning how the country works is a great idea. I wouldn’t push politics down my childrens throats if they were not interested, but it stands to reason that if the parents are keen on a good political debate, as we are, then the kids will want to imitate.
    In short, it’s far better to have your kids pretending to be Emily Pankhurst than playing with Barbies and other simpering girlie games.

    Posted by Amanda Babcock @loopygreebo | December 6, 2011, 7:11 pm
  5. I think it is great. As long as you are not indoctrinating children with the belief that they can’t be part of the family if they don’t share your views. I’m not sure that happens with politics, but it certainly does with religion.

    Posted by dillytante | December 6, 2011, 7:30 pm
  6. Brilliant piece!

    I do not think it is a bad thing that you are taking your daughter along to marches, rallies and meeting local politicians and allowing her to be around left-wing-leaning political material. She will be an informed and well-educated young person when she is older and not a young person who does not know who the Prime Minister is or which colour the different political parties have – I kid you not, I have friends at University (not politics students) who actually have no idea who are PM and thought it was still Gordon Brown (sometimes I dream that he still was, better than the lot we have in now, even with his faults!).

    I came from an apolitical family. My parents never voted (or if they did, they never mentioned it or discussed it), my Dad would watch the news but we would never discuss what was going on and the best paper that we would buy on a Sunday morning would be the Mirror and nothing else. Now I am a very politically engaged twenty year old, who engages with my both my local and national Labour Party and I am very community-driven and because of my own political growth, my parents are actually becoming more political as well. Me and my Dad had a two hour long philosophical/political debate on the future of the country and the kind of economic system we would like to see in the UK. Something that would never have happened 5 – 6 years ago, I can tell you that for sure! Mind I think it is because I will walk around the house ranting about the latest political goings-on or sit watching HoC live, so I think I am the one indoctrinating them!! Like my MP said when introducing me to people in Parliament, ‘This is Daniel … he is obsessed with politics’.

    Posted by Daniel Robert Tye | December 6, 2011, 7:57 pm
  7. Teach her about how all of the political parties, at the current moment in time, are as utterly feckless as each other for me.

    Hopefully things will change in the near future, but sadly, they’re all unelectable 😦

    Posted by krisball | December 6, 2011, 11:30 pm
  8. I took my 5 year old to a constituency meeting with Vince Cable. I was there to talk about the devastating effect of the cuts on child poverty. Based on the fact that my son sat quietly doing a maths puzzle, he accused me of being ‘middle class’, apparently seeing the attendance of my child as an indulgence rather than what it was – a necessity based on the lack of affordable child care. I suspect he’s made of the same stuff as DC.

    Posted by Anonymous | December 15, 2011, 11:29 am
  9. As an update, said four year old has started singing “The Red Flag” to herself as she potters about. Which is always nice to see.

    Posted by Alicia J Duffy | December 19, 2011, 8:59 pm
  10. Reblogged this on aliciajduffy.

    Posted by Alicia J Duffy | May 30, 2015, 9:44 pm

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