You Won’t Believe What a 9-Year-Old Can Teach Congress

It seems that just about everyone has an opinion about the government shutdown. Of all the reactions I’ve seen, however, the most spot-on responses have come from kids.

Take for example 9-year-old Meredith Gold who personally wrote a letter to Congress after her class field trip to Mammoth Cave National Park was canceled due to the shutdown:

At my school when we get into disagreements we compromise, work as a team, use leadership, have a positive attitude, and respect each other. I encourage you to do the same in Washington, D.C.

Oh snap! The U.S. Congress just got schooled by a 4th grader!

You would think one wouldn’t need to remind the leaders of our country about things like compromising, teamwork, leadership or respect, but it looks like Congress could learn a lot from a kid like Meredith Gold.

Gold is not alone.

A 9-year-old boy disappointed about a canceled family trip to celebrate the 123rd anniversary of Yosemite National Park was also upset about the government shutdown. When his parents explained what was going on he responded: “Isn’t that a weird way to run a country?”

Yup, it sure is kid!

In a post his mother wrote about her son’s reaction she said, “It’s a sad day when even a 9-year-old can clearly see that the government isn’t doing a competent job and needs to change.”

Middle school students from Rockingham County, Va., are also concerned with what’s happening with the government shutdown.

“It makes me a little nervous,” said one student.

“It’s a little scary that the government can shut down over an argument like that and if it was any bigger maybe more could happen,” said another student.

We shouldn’t be surprised that kids are so concerned with what’s happening with the government shutdown because they are part of a group that will feel the impact. Their favorite parks closing is just the beginning.

Kids with cancer will be turned away from clinical trials that could save their lives. As many as 19,000 kids will no longer be able to attend their preschool Head Start programs. Over 8.9 million moms and kids who rely on food from WIC are at risk of losing the support they need to feed their families.

How long is it going to take for Congress to take Meredith Gold’s advice?

If you need advice on how to talk to your kids about the government shutdown there are some helpful articles here:

Explaining the Shutdown to Your Kids

Government Shutdown

Photo credit: Thinkstock


Cathleen K.
Cathleen K4 years ago

Continued from below: Not to these people. Anyone who claims differently is a liar, ignorant, stupid or a combination of all three. I WANT MY COUNTRY BACK - the one where the North won the Civil War.

Cathleen K.
Cathleen K4 years ago

Continued from below: - the new soil of East Texas, unbelievably black and rich, produced more cotton than the rest of the Confederacy combined by 1861. I'll never forget driving from NY to Dallas with my little brother. He'd been to TX many times before (I lived there for 10 years), but always arrived by plane in Austin, and since the sightseeing fun is all west of the Balcones Escarpment, he'd never seen East Texas before. He'd fallen asleep in Arkansas and woke up to see fields of the darkest dirt known to man. He asked if there had been a fire and didn't believe me when I said 'no', until I reminded him of a story our Brooklyn born dad used to tell us about the bus ride he took at 16 to basic training in San Antonio in 1949. He'd gotten the shock of his young life at a sign spanning the entrance to a town that said "Greenville, TX. The Blackest Soil, the Whitest People. Nigger, Don't Let the Sun Set on You." Remember James Byrd, the black man dragged behind a truck by good ole boys until he was dead, about 15 years ago? Greenville, TX.

Those of us who don't know history are not equipped to see it sneaking up to bite us in the ass. Wake up America. Barack Obama is an Eisenhower Republican, and Obamacare is the Heritage plan launched to counter Hillarycare, but he's black, so the fact that it's already cutting medical costs, the only 'entitlement' program we actually have long term budget problems with that are not easily fixed doesn't matter. Not to the

Cathleen K.
Cathleen K4 years ago

"Isn't this a weird way to run a country?" It's NO way to run a country, but it is a tactic used before to dissolve a democratic republic. It's called nullification and was invented by John C. Calhoun of South Carolina as the means by which slaveholders could retain their 'property' in the face of the loss of popular support, which he saw clearly heading their way 30 years before the start of the Civil War - the fact that the free North was outperforming and outgrowing the slaver South being incontrovertible by 1830. He was a fierce champion of minority rights, so long as the minority in question were white men devoted to the peculiar institution. Like his ideological descendants, the Dixiecrats (all staunch Republicans today, and currently running the erstwhile 'Party of Lincoln', who is spinning in his grave), he was antidemocratic and didn't give a fig for what the SCOTUS had to say unless it supported his position, when it was, of course, sacrosanct. Dead by 1850, he still started the Civil War.

The War of Yankee Aggression, as Southerners refer to it, was a terrible mistake. We should have let them go while hemming them in and preventing any westward expansion. They'd have freed the slaves and sued for readmission in 25 years tops, and we'd all be infinitely better off. Even then, they were science deniers who were disinterested in modern farming, so their soil was played out - the new soil of east Texas, unbelievably black and rich, produced more cotton than

Margaret Goodman
Margaret G4 years ago

Those who think both parties are to blame for the U S government shutdown, consider the following scenario.

George W. Bush put through a big tax break for the rich. Many Democrats did not like this tax break. I personally thought it was a huge step in the wrong direction.

I recall that in 2006 George W. Bush faced a Democratic House of Representatives. Suppose that House had told Bush that unless he undid the tax break, the House would shut down the government and would also not raise the national debt limit.

Would the government shutdown be the fault of both parties in that case?

janet t.
janet t4 years ago

I don't feel too bad about parks being closed, but when they shut down Head Start and keep kids from college that it downright evil. And they are doing it all to make themselves richer and more powerful. A pox on the republicans and their future. I hope they rot.

Dani C.
Dani C4 years ago


Angela l.
Angela L4 years ago

It's all about POWER that caused the shutdown!! If both parties are willing to negotiate or understanding, knowing that will result to the suffering of the nation and its citizens, they would have give in on both sides. But all they care is their POWER !!!!!

Nils Anders Lunde
PlsNoMessage se4 years ago


Tim C.
Tim C4 years ago


Lynn C.
Lynn C4 years ago