Sunday, August 11, 2013

Dear Maddie

I thought I'd share some of the questions I get most often and answer them in case anyone else has the same question. Some of these aren't the actual questions just a paraphrasing of the general idea.

"Why did you start that petition?"

After the cookie and cake incident, I had about a day of joining in the jokes with people. I read McCrory's response on the cookies and the spokesperson's response to the cake and I wasn't satisfied with either one. I felt that some people weren't taking me seriously about how the response from that spokesperson about the cake made me feel. I decided to get serious. One of my friends was already suggesting I meet with the Governor and even sent that message to him. I thought, why not? I'd at least be trying to make some good come out of the whole baked goods affair.

"Where do you go to school?"

I don't and I never have. Right now, I'm working on getting some of my high school credits finished so I can plan for college. I don't know if I want to do early college like some of my friends have. We have dual enrollment here where you can take college credits while still in high school (if they don't cut that even more too by the time I get there) and I think I will do that first. I learn a lot on my own. Homeschooling doesn't have to be a thing where you sit down at a table and your mom gives you lessons. It really doesn't look like that for many of my friends. A lot of the teachers I do have for classes I choose to take are current or former public school teachers or college professors. Most of my friends still in school go to public school. Just because you don't go to public school doesn't mean you can't support it.

"What do you want to be when you grow up?"

My standard answer to that question is, "It hasn't been invented yet." I really don't think of my life in terms of planning for one big things. I kind of decide what I want to be doing with my life right now and how I get there. I love the arts. I love acting, working backstage, dancing, painting, taking photographs, fashion, and I just like to create in general. I want to direct a show. That's a big goal for me right now. I think about a future life where I can keep doing the things I love and have enough skills that are useful to have money to keep doing those things. Honestly, I don't see myself going into politics. The thought of going to school to do that isn't appealing. I'd love to be a makeup artist for the First Lady and get to hang around the outskirts of all the politics though.

"Does anybody help you write your blog?"

Writing it no. I do have a friends, people I've met through classes and such, I might ask to read something to see if it makes sense. The thoughts are no problem. It's organizing things that's harder for me. If I let somebody read what I wrote I usually end up taking things away or moving things around. I rarely add. The things I read are the biggest help and I do get some of my ideas for things I discuss with my friends on social media. I said before I think of writing a lot like I think of fashion. Instead of putting outfits and accessories together, it's words and ideas.

"Isn't there plenty of time to worry about this when you grow up?"

Actually when I grow up there will probably be less time because I hope to be much busier then. The whole "you sound like an adult" thing has been beyond annoying to me for years. One of my goals in life is to become an adult so if I happen to be demonstrating well that I'm learning how to be that, isn't that a good thing? I enjoy hanging out with friends, shopping, playing video games, just laying around and being a lazy teenager, and lots of other things other kids enjoy. I don't limit myself to anything. I don't compartmentalize myself.

"What is your family like?"

If you knew me and knew my parents, you'd be laughing as hard as we are at any suggestion they put me up to any of this. My parents are my biggest supporters in anything I want to do, however. When I was younger, if I had an interest they would help me find people with that interest and adults that could mentor me. I've been doing those things myself for awhile now. If I ask for a class they pay for it. If I want or need to go somewhere they almost always drive me. Sometimes I pay for gas or buy  lunch. I have a lot of freedom but I'm expected to not abuse it and I think that's fair. Think of helicopter parents and then think of the opposite and that would be my parents. My grandparents are a big part of my life too. My Mamu tells the best stories out of anyone I know. My Pop Pop, a Republican who watches Fox News, is good at practical jokes and math.

"What do you hope will be the outcome of all this?"

I hope the outcome will be a conversation with my Governor. I believe I've been reasonable in my request. If that doesn't happen I hope other young people, especially girls, see they can have a voice and they can get involved in issues that are important to them. I hope the next time adults meet someone my age they might treat them with a higher expectation of being a functional human being. Most of all, I hope other people get behind the idea that democracy is about regular people and that trying to make a change for the better is much better than endlessly arguing with people in a futile attempt to change their minds.

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