"What Will You Tell Your Children?"
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"What Will You Tell Your Children?"

When they see inappropriate behavior discussed on television or when they are exposed to hatred that can be seen in and toward our country

"What Will You Tell Your Children?"
Shannon Steffen

For over a year, and especially the last couple days, our social media platforms have been flooded with everything imaginable regarding the presidential race and election. The question I am seeing now, now that we have elected a president that half of America doesn’t agree with, is “What will you tell your children?” What will you tell your children when they see inappropriate behavior discussed on television or when they are exposed to hatred that can be seen in and toward our country?

From the minute my future children are born, I will tell them how lucky they are to live in a country where their opinion is heard. I will tell them to respect every single person on this planet, regardless of their color, physical ability, religion, sexuality, gender, or vote. I will tell them that hate will never solve a problem and how important it is to appreciate what they have. I will tell them to value their education and that they need to work hard every day along with everyone else. I will tell them that they are no more deserving than the next person and sometimes the best thing they can do is give. I will tell them to stand up for what they believe in, even when everyone seems to be telling them that it is unbelievable. I will tell them that ALL lives matter and they have no choice but to treat everyone with the exact same love and acceptance. I will tell them to stand for the American flag regardless of what is happening today because there are figures in our history and people currently fighting for the rights we have and the future we want to see. I will tell them to have confidence in the toughest of times and let them know that nothing worth fighting for ever came easily. I will tell them that one person can make a difference and to pay attention to the changes in our environment. I will tell them that God has a plan and this is all part of it.

I will tell my son that regardless of what he sees in the media, there is only one way to treat a woman, and that is with respect. I will tell him that gender does not define anyone’s success, ability, or validity. I will tell him that violence is not always the answer and that not every male public figure is going to be as good of a role model as the next one. I will tell him that he is capable of many things and I will remind him that your financial status does not define you.

And I will tell my daughter that there is absolutely nothing she cannot do. I will tell her about Susan B. Anthony and how she not only fought for the right to vote until she died in 1906, but also fought for the expansion of married women's property rights in 1853. I will tell her about how Hillary Clinton became the first female presidential nominee of a major party in 2016. I will tell her about Marie Curie being the first woman to win a Nobel Prize and how her investigations led to the discovery of radioactivity. I will tell her that she should never feel like less of a person, or a woman, because of what one person thinks or says. I will tell her not to fight to be better than men, but to be equal to them. I will tell her that she should never settle for anything less than what she deserves and that the world is just as much her oyster as it is anyone else’s.

And I will continue to tell myself all of this and more every day for the rest of my life.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.

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