Sunday, December 02, 2007

CITIZENS GATHER IN PHILADELPHIA

The Great Expectations project held its citizens convention this afternoon at the Pennsylvania Convention Center, and it appeared that the youngest attendee by far was a two-year-old Chinese girl. That's right, I either get "Best Dad" or "Worst Dad" for schlepping Jada downtown in the slushy rain. Given that she fell asleep on the way back and then cried as we got home because she was cold and wet, if I had a vote, it would be for the latter!

But while she was there, she got to see citizenship in action: people of all ages and ethnicities taking time out of their weekends to gather in small groups and discuss such issues as taxes, crime, and poverty. I saw more than a few familiar faces in attendance, including Sam Katz, who ran for mayor in 1999 and 2003, and who I wanted to but didn't get a chance to say thanks to for his endorsement this year of David Oh for City Council.

I couldn't participate in any discussions myself, but I wanted to make sure I brought Jada. Why? Because she's why I get involved in stuff like this: because it's not just for me, it's for the next generation. And so I want her to say that we're working hard now to make a better Philadelphia for later. And maybe, just maybe if I bring her to enough of these things, she'll grow up to be this kind of citizen, too.
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