My grandfather was a farmer in North Dakota who worked very hard from sun up to sun down. Along with the example of a strong work ethic, he instilled in me the significance of the privilege and duty to vote – even impressing this on me at a very young age. He loved to engage in a robust discussion of how elected public servants and their policies were impacting his day to day life, including the economy and the business of running his family farm. To this day I can’t imagine not voting. In turn, I have imparted this legacy onto my children who are now 20 and 23 years old. My children can tell you that their mom has repeated way too many times these past couple of months: “Make sure you get your flu shot and make sure you vote!”
This mid term election in Minnesota is pivotal. Hanging in the balance is our Minnesota governorship, both of our U.S. Senate seats, several very competitive congressional races, all state constitutional officers and the entire Minnesota House. It is with our voice as pediatricians and as voting citizens that we can participate in our democracy in a most meaningful way.
I recently checked in with Mary, a pediatrician in Wilmington, North Carolina asking in an email how she was doing in the aftermath of hurricane Florence. Mary and I were residents together. She has practiced pediatrics in Wilmington for over 30 years. These are Mary’s words: “Thank you for your concern. We are safe and powered up again but the tree damage in our neighborhood is just incredible. It will take months for this area to recover. Low lying inland property is still dealing with flooding. And then there’s all the people who live on the edge everyday who will fall over with this sort of thing. I always worry for the children”.
This couldn’t be said any better. I want to acknowledge how hard you work for children and families in your practice and communities because you “worry for the children.”
Lori DeFrance MD,FAAP