Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Casualty of the Mommy Wars

Ah, the distractions of a political campaign.

When Rick Santorum was still in the running, it was contraception. Now, with him gone, it’s shifted from the War on Women to the Mommy War.
Give me a break.

I guess it’s hard having to fill all that air time. I suppose you could fill it with well-researched news and well-argued opinion, but that takes time. And by time I mean hours. But hours are an eternity to the fast-paced news business, where your competition can beat you with the next new completely idiotic distraction by mere seconds, and if they do, well, they get to beat on their chests (even the ladies) and strut about with their penises hanging out (even the ladies) because, hey, they’re the big news-oozing machine that beat the competition and got to make someone squirm on live TV because of the comments they said or were said against them or for them or in their general direction and some such drivel.

Bill Maher is the latest to open his gob in the Mommy War battle, saying something that sounds, on the onset, completely stupid but then, after you think about it, sounds even stupider than you first thought.

Says the man:
No one is denying that being a mother is a tough job; I remember I was a handful. But you know there is a big difference between being a mother, and that tough job, and getting your ass out the door at 7 am when it’s cold, having to deal with the boss, being in a workplace, or even if you’re unhappy you can’t show it for eight hours.
Anyone who has been a mother, or even spent more than five minutes thinking about motherhood, knows what Mr. Maher says is patently stupid.

My wife has to get three kids out the door to school by 8 am. So, it’s not 7 am, but when Bill gets himself to work at 7 am, I’m sure he’s only got himself to worry about – he doesn’t have to make sure three uncooperative little sprites are ready to go alongside him. She’s out the door with those kids rain or shine.

She doesn’t have to deal with a boss. She does have to deal with teachers who are wondering where the missing homework is, why junior britches is throwing an Asberger-related tantrum in class, why little miss chucklehead can never remember her lunchbox and why that little spaz, the young one, can’t find his jacket even though he’s standing on it.

She doesn’t have to deal with a workplace. Just home, where once the kids are at school there’s stuff that needs doing and she’s the boss telling her no matter how much she’d like to take it easy if she does she won’t get her homework done (she’s taking masters-level classes right now) or get her teaching material ready (she’s a volunteer with the Boy Scouts of America) or any of the other tasks she’s got to get done without anyone looking over her shoulder or even with a paycheck attached to it. Motivation boils down to maybe a grunt from the kids when they come home from school or a deep sigh from Dad when he has to figure out why her computer won’t talk to the color printer so she can get her work done, which she does without pay.

And she can’t show she’s unhappy. Well, in small, guarded moments she can, when the kids have blown her off for the nth time on getting their piano lessons done (which she teaches them) or their clothes put away (which she washes) or their homework done (which she corrects and signs for them) or when Dad gives that sigh or complains about having to do too much after he’s home from his job of whatever the hell it is he does each day without kids underfoot or one of them calling her to school with a plastic bag and a pair of clean underwear because he pooped his pants.

But of course going over all of this does nothing to help me decide if I should vote for the bozo with the big ears and the do-nothing-complex because the big, bad Republicans are in control of the House of Representatives or the guy who has to check the windsock at the airport every morning to see what his views on various subject might be and who has to kiss butt to the right-wing whackos in the party because they tend to be the ones who go out to vote. It’s all just fodder for the talking heads who are all satisfied that, at the end of each day, they’re helping me on the issues, they’re helping me sort out, via ludicrous comments on non-important things, who I should vote for so that the books balance, the wars end (but not the culture wars, let’s fan those because they give the TV folks something to jabber about).

Add to it all we’re reading Helaman in our scripture study, the chapters in which Helaman talks about the devil getting such a strong hold on the hearts of men, distracting them with their riches and with battles over politics and culture while the big, important things (like getting rid of the Gadianton Robbers, for one) go unchecked to the point they basically become the government*.

Let’s shut down the Mommy Wars. They’re nothing but a distraction.

*Before you get all knotted up, I’m not making any parallels between the robbers of old and anyone involved in current government. I don’t believe there’s a great conspiracy on either the left or the right to usurp and do whatever to the government to make it fall. I’m just saying there are distractions today, just like then, that are pulling our attention from the things that really matter.

Forgive me. Just feeling a bit Entish at the moment.

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