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Voices Behind the Vote - Part 9: The Country is Changing


Carol Lovato was born in Chicago. Her father was in the military so the family moved around a lot – to New Mexico, California, and Germany.

When it came time for her to choose a place to live as an adult, she went to the place where she felt the happiest as a child – Albuquerque. And she found a job that was just right for her.

CAROL: I was a history teacher at bulldog city, Albuquerque high for 30 years.

Carol LOVED teaching. She lives in an old adobe house in Albuquerque’s north valley.  Sitting on a couch surrounded by bookshelves, she lights up just talking about the idea of giving out homework assignments. But, in 2004…it was time to move on.

I was wearing out. It’s not that I was burned out, I was just looking like the bag lady in my yearbook pictures and I said to myself…it’s time to let somebody younger do this

As a retiree, Carol has time to take her granddaughters to ballet, to read about current events,  practice the violin and play the piano …[bring in AMB under this graf]

This is a Weezer, made in chicago in 1996...

It’s hard for Carol to pass up the opportunity to connect contemporary politics to history. She used the experiences of past presidents handling the issues of their day to encourage her students to think critically about politics today.

How did Roosevelt handle these things, how did Lincoln do it? How did Jefferson do it? Jefferson had a very bitter election campaign against John Adams. They called each other such terrible names…laughing…that it makes contemporary politics look nice

When it comes to her own perspective on politics, Carol considers herself a progressive.

I’ve been a democrat all my life. That, I think, is defensible…my sympathies with the majority of people and their well being. I think the democratic party has done a much better job

Carol is thinking about several issues in this year’s election - women’s rights, the environment and how many more of her former students who are in the military might get sent to Afghanistan.

Carol also says she’s worried about job opportunities for her former students.

The loss of jobs for every segment of people, particularly the young. Some of the really high-educated high tech jobs which are so well paying are not jobs that our young people, not the people that I taught, not the majority of kids who went to Albuquerque High could not and would not want to have jobs like that so why should they then be forced to take menial, service, part-time low paying and with no advancement and security or befits, I think it’s demoralizing.

Although Carol is Anglo, she married into a Hispanic family and she says she sees the demographics of the nation shifting. Carol also says she watched news coverage of both the Democratic and Republican conventions earlier this year, and one thing stood out to her about the Republicans…

The one in Tampa was almost entirely white people, older white people. Not that I don’t like older white people. I probably look like one. But the country is changing; the country is in need of supporting new people and giving them the best we have

Caro and she hopes investment in young people, especially in Hispanic and Native American communities in New Mexico.

Carol Lovato plans to vote for the Democrats this year and she plans to vote early.

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