Friday, April 13, 2012

Dear Regressive Critics: Hilary Rosen is Absolutely Correct

You heard me.  I'm not going to be like Obama and namby pamby this issue and make apologies.  I make none.  Ann Romney deserves every bit of criticism that's coming to her.

Regressives are trying to spin this as some leftist take on the "Mommy Wars."  They are trying to make this about the eternal struggle between mothers who stay home with their kids (saints who are above reproach and are the only good true mothers in the eyes of Republicans) and mothers who work - whether out of choice or (more likely) necessity. 

BZZZZZZZTTTTTTT.  Sorry.  Here's your consolation prize.  Thanks for playing.  Please pack your daggers and go home.

Rosen was pointing out something that regressives fail to find obvious - Ann Romney is not, and never has been, an example of your average motherhood experience in the United States.  It doesn't matter if we're talking about working mothers or stay-at-home mothers.  None of that has anything to do with Ann Romney.

The average mother in the United States, regardless of whether or not she has an outside job, likely faces a lot of struggles.  She has to budget the family money to make sure her kids are adequately fed, clothed, and provided with medical care.  She has to make sure her kids are watched over when she is unavailable, which might mean paying someone.  She may have to make tough choices about which non-necessary items she can buy her kids, whether it's a toy they crave,  the latest fashions for a teenage daughter who wants to fit in, or ice skating lessons.  The average American mother will always have a  long list of chores and errands such as picking kids up from school and activities, taking them to doctor appointments, cooking meals, and cleaning the house.  Every day your average mother has to walk that fine line and work that delicate balance of money and time. 

Ann Romney is not your average mother.  She is fabulously wealthy.  She has publicly admitted she has a team of nannies, housekeepers, chauffers, and other staff to help her handle the duties.  Ann Romney has never had to worry about rushing to pick one kid up from school when another kid just barfed on the living room rug.  Ann Romney has never had to worry about whether or not there will be enough money left over after the car needs major repairs for a daughter to continue her beloved ballet lessons.  Ann Romney has never had to worry about finding an affordable sitter for the night when she and Mittens want a date night, nor does she have to worry if a movie and a nice dinner is too pricey.

I don't begrudge the woman her wealth.  We would all love to be so lucky.  I do have an isuse with her husband using her to try to pander to all women voters because she claims to have something in common with them.  She has nothing in common with your average American woman except for the fact that she has children.  She always has someone looking after the children on staff.  She always has someone to pick them up from school.  She never has to worry about their medical expenses.  She can afford any luxury item or activity they choose.  That's great for her kids, but it's nothing that most American women can relate to.

As a side note, I find it so funny that the right accuses Obama, a man raised by a single mother from a fairly humble background, is considered "elitist" because he is well educated, but Romney and his family get a pass for their incredible wealth.  Why is it sometimes acceptable for a politician to be extremely wealthy and have an entire staff to raise his children, and sometimes it simply means the politician is an out-of-touch elitist?  I guess that's a subject for another blog.

This issue isn't about mothers staying home with their kids or not or critcizing them for doing so.  It's about knowing what it takes to raise a child in today's economy.  I'm not terribly certain Ann Romney does.  Her husband needs to stop using her to get the women's vote. 

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