Wednesday, April 18, 2012

The debate on whether mothers "work" or not is missing the point

When Bill Maher, in defending himself in defending Rosen (but missing the point of what she said) said, "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 a*& out the door at 7 a.m. 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," he had NO IDEA what he was talking about.

The man has no idea what mothers do. All those things he describes? They're easier than being a mother. Poor rich idiot.

But when everyone spent all their time defending the idea that moms do work--hard--even though they are at home, they missed the point, too. Not as bad as Maher missed the point, but still. When I see articles showing the economic value of mothers, they invariably simplify motherhood to a series of tasks that we'd otherwise have to pay someone to do: cooking, cleaning, chauffering, counselling, tutoring....

But mothers are so much more than that. So much more than menial laborers. 

Mothers are the protectors and creators of our whole society. A society is not made of individuals doing what they want (even if our culture is pushing that as the ideal). A society is made up of connected people who interact with each other. And who creates those people? Mothers. Who fosters those connections? Mothers. Who teaches people how to interact, how to be consumers, how to help, how to learn, how to work? How to be productive members of society? MOTHERS. 

Even the people who try to boil it down to economics are missing the point: Mothers CREATE the economy. They teach people how to work, how to use and save money effectively, how to be responsible, how to care for themselves and others. They also have a MAJOR influence on how and where most of the money gets spent.

Mothering (okay--Parenting. Fathers are equally important) is the single most important job in the WORLD. It is the lynchpin that holds all of society together. Good mothers make stable homes. Stable homes make healthy kids and happy, productive, law-abiding adults. Healthy kids make society, now and in the future. Everything--EVERYTHING--that makes life worth living and makes society strong, healthy, safe, and wonderful boils down to mothers doing their jobs right and doing them well. 

Mothers are more important than governments, than presidents, than money. 

Any single problem in our society can be traced back to homes and families. Fixing the homes and families, making mothers less stressed so women can make mothering their priority instead of pleasing a boss their priority, is the absolute key to solving every single problem in our society. Want to fix education? Fix the homes. Want to get fewer people into prison and onto drugs? Fix the homes. Want to cut the crime rate? Fix the homes. Want to get people off welfare? Fix the homes. 

Motherhood should be an honored position, given a great deal of respect and support. 

Instead, we mock women who make motherhood a priority over money. We tell them they're lazy, good-for-nothing leeches. I still remember the man who looked me in the eye and said, "Well, my wife likes to contribute to our family [so she kept her job]."  Apparently staying at home raising your kids, sacrificing everything you have and are to make a family (and yourself, in the process) happy is a waste of time and not a contribution to the family. Only money matters. 

And then we wonder why the nation is falling apart.

1 comment:

Friple said...

You seem to have posted a swear word by mistake. Please fix this problem as soon as possible.