Be Careful What You Ask For
As women - as mothers - in the United States, what is it that we really want? To be considered equal to men, or to be considered special? We can't, I'm afraid, have it both ways. Feminism, originally devoted to elevating the status of women to that of men, seems now to have split into those who strive onward for equality where it has not yet been reached (such as in the home and in childraising responsibilities) and those who fight for the extra needs of women (beyond the needs of men). As an ESP mother, I fall squarely in the equality camp of course.
But our politicians seem to think that women want to hear that they are special, and that they therefore deserve more than men. This article describes the latest campaign tactics, in the form of advertisements, that the Obama and Clinton strategists feel will appeal to women voters. Here, we have our candidates telling women that we are the world's nurturers - the keepers of home and family. And they are smart - these strategists - because we relate to this role.
Beware, however. All parents, including fathers, should relate to Obama's and Clinton's family agenda. And if it is directed only at mothers - once again - it could someday become legislation that keeps women and men as unequal as ever. Family policies designed to 'help' mothers stay home and fathers stay at work will not create equality.
Just something to keep in mind as we listen to what the candidates say is good for America.