Okay, so I’m not into huge political debates and the like, simply because I think most politicians are overpaid dimwits. I also don’t profess to know anything about the political system in theUnited States, but I do have some amount of common sense.
A friend of mine, Alistair Jameson, has started an initiative called A Mother of a Ride where he and a number of other cyclists will be covering over 6000 Km across South Africa (about 10000 miles) on bicycles to make people aware of domestic violence, and what can be done to break the silence against it. He posted this article (if you can call it that) on Facebook this morning and after I had read it, a myriad of emotions went through me – the biggest one being anger, quickly followed by mouth-agape-disbelief.
What on God’s green earth is this Senator thinking? Or wait, let me rephrase that – did he have a bowl of stupid for breakfast, with a dash of the dark ages on the side? He has never been married (I wonder why), nor has he had kids. What does he honestly hope to achieve with this legislation?
I would like to pose some simple-common-sense questions to him, as he obviously can’t think further than his nose.
- By effectively “penalizing” single mothers (note, not single fathers), you are stating that it is better for a woman, and her child, to stay in a (possibly) abusive relationship. So, as long as the family is a nuclear unit, to hell with what the long term consequences might be. Is that right?
- You mention unwed, single mothers – what about mothers in common-law marriages, effectively they are unwed. Or doesn’t that matter, because there is a man in the equation?
- How will your legislation impact single mothers, who have become “unwed” by losing their husband to death? How long will they be “allowed” to be single mothers before they too are penalized, or are you expecting them to be in front of the altar with another man before their husband is even cold in the ground?
- What of mothers who become single through divorce? Even more so, what of mothers who become single through divorce because their husbands filed the suit?
Let me tell you something Senator – I was raised by a single, unwed mother for a great deal of my formative years. My biological father was a drunk, gambling, pot addict, who would often disappear for weeks on end when the mood grabbed him. He abused my mother physically and emotionally and he abused me (and some other young girls) sexually. It was my mother who sold up and left, who saw to it that I was well looked after, while she often went without. She eventually married a wonderful man, who treated me like his own flesh and blood – but that very easily could not have happened.
One thing I’m quite sure of – no woman wants to be a single mother – it’s hard, it’s demanding and sometimes disheartening, but she will if it means she can give her child a better life. I’m sure too, if my mother had to do it again, she would.
Maybe if you had children of your own, you’d understand.
Oh, and one more thing – when you sit down to have breakfast tomorrow, try a bowl of reality with a dash of empathy. It’s way better than a bowl of stupid…