Monday, September 26, 2011

Back to D.C.

I have a guest blogger today; my oldest son. He just returned from  a 2 week expedition to both Washington D.C. and Atlanta, GA, where he participated in 2 fantastic leadership programs. Today he is sharing about Teenpact's Back to D.C. program. Stay tuned 'cause later this week he'll be writing about Challenge. 
Go here for more information about TeenPact Leadership Schools and to find a state class near you! 

      Back to D.C’ is one of several alumni events for the Teen Pact program. It takes place in Washington D.C. in mid September. But what is Back to D.C. about? Why would one to three dozen students want to travel hundreds of miles to get behind on schoolwork and drug all over the nations capitol? The answer can be found in the simple question: what are their priorities?
       One might be surprised, when they looked at the numbers and realized just how small of a number of American citizens actually care about how their government works. A lot of people theses days are ignorant about the details of how a bill is passed. Many don’t even realize that they are ignorant, or they simply don’t care.  Part of Teen Pact’s mission is to fight this ignorance; to educate young people about how their government works; to get them to care about their country and where it is going. It doesn’t work to just let the politicians take care of everything. Because, just like anyone else, the candidates rarely know what’s best for more than a few people at a time, and even if they do, they might not care about you.
       This is why young people are taking the time to become Teen Pact alumni and make the pilgrimage to their nation’s capitol. For four days they attend lectures, which will range from the topics of clear communication to running a successful campaign. During this time they will also live up to the message blazoned on their shirts: We came, we saw, we walked; A lot. A mock presidential campaign is also in order, as well as getting intimate with the local metro system. Not to be forgotten is the chance to play ultimate Frisbee in front of the Washington monument. And what trip to D.C would be complete without a chance to get inside the capitol building itself. It’s a chance to learn, to grow, and make friends form all over the nation. You get to walk until you’re legs hate you, and do all sorts of touristy things while still looking professional.    
       Washington D.C. is truly an amazing place. The capitol mall is huge; the buildings are big and beautiful; and the water tastes like tax-payers dollars! Don’t ask how I know this. Just go and find out for yourself. Parents are welcome to go as well, and see the things their progeny are seeing. Because in politics, everyone should be a student: no one trusts the experts anyway. It’s an opportunity everyone should take. To go and grow as a person; learn as a citizen; witness their government in action; meet the people they’ve elected; and to have some honest to goodness fun!

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