The parties my father votes for never get into Parliament. One year he'll vote for some economist with thick glasses who promises a revolution in tax law, the next year for an irate teacher with a ponytail who advocates a revolution in the school system, the year after that for a restaurateur in Jaffa who explains that only a new culinary approach can bring peace to the Middle East.He shouldn't have inhaled.
The one thing these candidates have in common is a genuine desire for fundamental change. That and the naïveté to believe such change is possible. My father, even at the age of 78, is naïve enough to believe this, too. It's one of his finest qualities.
In the last elections, my brother, a founder of the Legalize Marijuana Party, asked my father for his vote. My father found himself in a quandary. On the one hand, it's not every day that your son founds a political party. On the other, my father, who had a taste of the horrors of fascism during World War II, takes all his civic duties very seriously.
"Look," he said to my brother, "It's not that I don't trust you, but there are all these serious people who claim that grass is actually dangerous, and as a person who's never tried it, I can't really be sure they're wrong." And so, about a week before Election Day, my brother rolled my father a joint. "What can I tell you, kid?" my father said to me that evening during a slightly hallucinatory phone conversation. "It's not half as good as Chivas - but to make it illegal?" And so my father became the oldest voter for the coolest party in the history of Israel's elections. From the minute he said he would vote for it, I knew it wouldn't get into Parliament.
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