Saturday, April 19, 2008


When I became a father, I knew it was going to be a learning experience. I had no idea. Obviously, the nuts and bolts of parenting provide you with lots of new skills, and a child can teach you many things as well. One thing I did not expect was the lessons that I would learn from some of of my daughter's books. Granted, these children's books are designed to teach you things, but as an adult, I assumed these books had little to offer me. Then I read "The Little Red Hen".
This book chronicles a little red hen's quest to bake a loaf of bread. It tells of the hen's struggles to acquire the ingredients and process them into dough as well as the work that had to be done to bake the dough into bread. All through the process, the hen asks for help from the other animals in the barnyard. Of course, no animals were willing to lend a hand with any of the steps required to produce the bread. Still, when the bread was finally finished thanks to the tireless efforts of the hen, the other animals felt that they were somehow entitled to a share of the bread that they had no hand in baking.
When I chose this book to read to my little girl, I had no idea what it was about. To me, it was just a book about chickens. After reading it the first time, I immediately realized that this little book had done what I have been attempting to do for some time now. In terms that even a small child can understand, it had perfectly summarized the philosophy of liberalism.

If you know a small child, or an adult liberal, this book is the perfect gift. But remember, when reading to children and liberals, read slowly, be patient and don't expect them to understand it the first time.