Today was Red Coat Day at the Mississippi State Capitol, and my daughter, Abby, and I had the pleasure of attending. Every year, Abby looks forward to visiting the Governor’s Mansion, seeing First Lady Deborah Bryant and getting her picture made with her. There is no better way to teach a child about government and politics than to let him/her participate in the process first hand. Today was one of those days.
Elementary students, all the way up to college students, visit the Capitol throughout the legislative session. My fifth grader was able to meet Lt. Governor Tate Reeves, Secretary of State Delbert Hosemann, Speaker of the House Philip Gunn, State Treasurer Lynn Fitch, our DeSoto delegation, MSGOP staff and Republican women from all over the state. She was also able to see FIrst Lady Deborah Bryant again at the Governor’s Mansion for tea. Abby and I spent time visiting the House and Senate galleries where you can witness bills being debated, passed or failed. Our SOS invited us to his office for a visit where he let Abby sit in his chair and get a feel for being the SOS. She really enjoyed this.
Our DeSoto group received warm welcomes from our House Rep Robert Foster on the House floor and Senator Kevin Blackwell on the Senate floor. Abby and I also appreciated Our DeSoto Rep Steve Hopkins for shuttling us to the Capitol this morning so that we didn’t have to walk from our hotel. It was a sunny and beautiful day in Jackson, and I am thankful that my daughter wanted to go and got to do all that she did. Life experiences such as these are greater than any lesson in a book. I encourage all of you with children to consider visiting the Capitol and allowing your kids to see why people campaign, what campaigns lead up to, what our elected officials do once in office and witness the processes of our government first hand. It is so important to stay informed and stay engaged even from an early age.