People without children vote, too

Has anybody noticed how much every speaker at the Republican National Convention seemed to focus on moms, children and grandchildren? It seems to be a persistent theme. They’re doing their darndest to appeal to women voters, saying things like women should have as much say as men and be encouraged to succeed, yada yada, but it always seemed to be coupled with motherhood. Did anyone hear any of them say anything about women who are not mothers? Or men who are not fathers?

Mitt Romney comes from a big family, and that’s great, although I squirmed when he said his wife “could have” succeeded at anything she wanted to be. Can’t she still? Is motherhood and being the smiling wife of a politician her only role? Come on, Mitt.

Pamela Tsigdinos, author of Silent Sorority, a book about infertility, wrote a great piece this week after Ann Romney’s speech that I think you will enjoy. It’s called “Enough with the Mom Pandering, Ann Romney.”

Wherever one stands politically, I think it’s important for our leaders to understand that we don’t all follow the same path: ivy league college, marriage, children, grandchildren. We’re here. We don’t have kids, but we vote.

2 thoughts on “People without children vote, too

  1. Very interesting! Both you and Pamela hit on something that I hadn't really thought about before. All this pomp and circumstance surrounding mothers (and fathers) during campaign seasons and Hallmark Holidays seem to suggest that those of us who are childless are already getting all the accolades we need. I remember being a kid during Mother's Day and Father's Day, and asking, “How come we don't celebrate Kid's Day?” The answer, of course, was always: “Every day is Kid's Day!”

    In the same sense, it seems as though the conspicuously fertile among us (the majority of the population) seem to think that every day is Non-Mother's Day. We must spend our abundance of cash (saved up from all those diapers and juice boxes we never bought) on weekly mani-pedis, while being fed grapes from silver bowls and fanned with palms by our admirers who can't stop talking about what accomplished career women we are! Oh, and another perk, of course, is the fact that we don't have to care about the future, because we have no offspring who must endure it.

    I agree with Anne Romney that it's exhausting to work hard at a career all day, and then come home to help a child with his book report. As a college teacher, it is exhausting for me to teach from morning to night, only to spend my off time helping students whose moms are not helping (and, in some cases, have never helped) them with their homework. It is all about how your time is spent, not about your biological contribution to the population.

    Personally, I think Mitt Romney's wife HAS succeeded at what she wanted to be. She is a mother and the smiling wife of a politician. She doesn't have to be any more or less than that. And neither do I. I hope they see that before election time.


  2. Jossalyn,
    Every day is non-mother's day? Let's celebrate. But I don't really enjoy grapes. Chocolate truffles would be good, especially since I don't have any weight problems because I was never pregnant. I wish.
    It is hard to combine career and motherhood. I learned that with a live-in stepson, but you're right. It's what you do with your time, not whether you gave birth, that counts the most.


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