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Run Granny Run
Doris Haddock-- Granny D-- is the nation's oldest political newcomer. A former housewife and office assistant, Doris was happily retired for over 20 years--but when her husband died, she needed a reason to live. So at the age of 90, she laced up her sneakers and walked across the United States to rally against the influence of big money in elections. Her epic journey galvanized popular attention to a political system gone awry, but for Doris the walk was a warm up. Now 94 and still fed up with politics as usual, she jumps at an unexpected chance to run for the U.S. Senate against incumbent Judd Gregg (an intellectual sparring partner of George W. Bush). With just 4 months until Election Day, this great-grandmother of sixteen faces a series of challenges that would be daunting for a candidate of any age. Doris and her motley crew of political aces and amateurs work against all odds to craft a feisty campaign that personifies her democratic ideals of , by and for the people. A tale of doggedness versus dollars, grit against greenbacks, RUN GRANNY RUN is an unlikely portrait of a remarkable activist and citizen.
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Granny D is one of those 'spunky eldsters' who helped me to realize that you don't have to complacently "go over the hill" after your turn 50. When she was 89 years old, Doris "Granny D" Haddock walked across the entire United States, a distance of nearly 3,200 miles,. Granny D was not an athlete, just a little old grandmotherly type from New Hampshire who decided to do something grand instead of sitting at home being depressed after her husband died. When she completed the 14-month journey, which took her across the Mojave Desert and the Appalachian mountains, she wrote: "The walk, I must say, improved my health. ... I finished the walk twenty years younger than when I started. It was good for my arthritis and emphysema."
To celebrate her 85th birthday, my mother-in-law, Joseta, took her first skydiving lesson. She sent us the video and said she did it "to surprise her children." Joseta is another grandmotherly type who decided to not be an old fuddy-duddy. All across the country and around the world, we find an increasing number of men and women in their sixties, seventies, eighties and even nineties, who are in excellent health and have better physiques than many men and women decades younger. However, most of us don't see older people this way.
All us baby boomers need to look to the example of Granny D and other spunky eldsters to stay in shape as we get older. As I discovered myself, regular exercise leads to physical fitness and a better quality of life as we get older.
Richard Kownacki, Ph.D. Author of: Do Not Go Gentle: Successful Aging for Baby Boomers and All Generations
The film has many lovely shots of New Hampshire, planning sessions at Granny's house, and the work her campaign did to put a little pressure on the Republican incumbent, Judd Gregg. It also didn't edit out the hard work of politics nor the moments when Granny was in a bad mood or feeling sort of overwhelmed by the demands being put on her. There's a hilarious scene when she's preparing for her televised debate with the professional politician. She stumbled early on in the actual debate, but ended up making many important points.
We need for more progressive people to run for office, advocate for various causes, and otherwise make their voices heard.
For a magazine that regularly covers grassroots citizen action throughout the US and abroad, I'd recommend Yes!
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