by Cheryl Jackson Thursday October 4, 2007

Yep, we're gettin' a cat. At least I think we are, because I can't stand the relentless begging anymore.

This would not be such an issue if we didn't already have a dog - a lovely, boisterous, fun-loving two-year-old lab. Can you see my hesitation? The house will become a running track, there will be enough hair on the floor to stuff a duvet, and the dog will eat the cat food and, no doubt, its litter. With any luck, he won't actually eat the cat.

But my daughter, the PETA member vegetarian, MUST save a life, so we may soon be heading off to the humane society to find the neediest cat there, and bring it home.

How can I not support her? She is absolutely driven to helping others. And as an 11-year-old, what else can she do? She knows that saving one cat will not save the world, but at the moment, it's her way of making this earth a kinder, better place, and I'm all for it.
So I'm trying to overlook the down sides of another pet, and trying to find ways to support her.

On Tuesday, October 9th, Craig Kielburger, founder of Free the Children, is coming into our Your Voice studio to talk about child activism. We have some questions for him. When should children become activists? When is too young? And what is age-appropriate? I know it breaks my heart when my daughter cries over pictures and stories of suffering, but is that so bad? Or is that strong feeling necessary to incite action? How can kids become advocates for a good cause without taking on a burden too big for them? Or in my case, a burden too big for the parents?

I'm asking Craig, because I think he knows the answer. And I really need to know...before we get a cat.