So. I have been accused of being a bad feminist. I’ve been accused of being stereotypically biased against women.
I think I’ve failed to be clear enough. My problem with Sarah Palin is that she is a full time working mother who has a full time working husband- and they’ve both been clear that neither career will be postponed. My irritation with Sarah Palin does not have to extend to Obama, because Michelle has made it clear that she will be a mother first, and everything else can wait. She doesn’t go out on the campaign trail full time. Eighty percent of the time the kids sleep in their own beds, and wake up to mommy having breakfast waiting for them. If this were the situation that Sarah Palin’s family would be experiencing- only with daddy putting out breakfast, I would shrug and say that I hope that he knows how to change a diaper and is going to help his daughter transition into motherhood. My dad was a stay-at-home dad for part of my childhood- I think that either parent can fit that bill.
The point is that if you choose to have a family, you are choosing for one or both parents to put their own careers on hold in order to raise said family. Children need a consistent parental figure for the first three years of their lives- the most important three years of their lives. Teenagers need a parent who knows where they are, what they are doing, and with whom. They need accountability and a firm hand. (Note, however, that even really great parents can raise kids that do stupid things, as stupid things are a part of finding individuality that every child has to do- some things more stupid than others.)
I have a problem with any parent that will take a child onto the national stage and then desert them. I don’t care if it’s a man or a woman. If Sarah wants to pursue her career and her husband puts his on hold, kudos to them. If Michelle puts hers on hold for Barack’s sake, kudos to her. The question simply becomes, “if one of you has a calling to the national stage- who is called to the family?”
Because, honestly, the family is a higher calling. There is no better thing that someone can do than to raise well-adjusted kids who can take care of themselves and raise good kids in turn. Our country depends on generations of well-adjusted kids far more than anything else. Nationalized health care won’t do anyone any good if most of the population are sociopaths.