Only the SOWs shall speak
Suzanne has waded through a great deal of feedback that she received when she spoke out against government funding of the Status of Women and suggested that valuable contributions could be continued under a different government umbrella and that the funding for Status of Women as a separate body should be discontinued.
She has outlined things more clearly on her blog which I have linked to and she has cited the various sources of these comments.
For women who say that a womans place is in the home, they sure do alot of public bitching about the State replacing the Church as the source of social services.
Believing that a mother who has small children can make a valuable contribution in the family home providing direct care and nurturing to her children does not mean that that role is less important than paid employment in the community. Believing that a mother can make a valuable contribution by assuming that role on a full-time basis does not mean that women that they are devoid of opinion on matters of public policy or less qualified or entitled to articulate those views than women who do not provide direct full time care to their children.
This poster, to my eyes, is inferring that that role is less important and one worthy of disdain. I believe that stay at home mothers and people that truly value that role believe that the women who assume that role have the intellectual capacity to express their thoughts and the right to participate in society by engaging in discussions.
Those who reject a stay-at-home mother as being unworthy of forming or articulating a position on a subject are disproportionately "progressive" people.
Suzanne stated: Let me dispel some of the myths. Many of us are college-educated. Many of us have jobs outside the home-- sometimes full-time, sometimes part-time, sometimes with a stay-at-home husband, and sometimes not. Most of us prefer to stay home, because we believe that no one can be a full-time substitute for mom.
While Suzanne is correct that many of those articulating their views have had the opportunity to complete post-secondary education I do not see that as terribly relevant. I don't believe that women are only entitled to speak if they pass some elitist academic understanding. I also don't believe that "progressive" people generically wish to see women who have not completed University deemed unworthy of engaging in public discussion on current events. Women who agreed with them from any educational background would be a welcomed voice. I believe that they wish to see women who do not share their views voluntarily withdraw from discussions due to the hostility.
Suzanne quoted: " They want all women barefoot and pregnant in the kitchen. In fact, someone should tell all those REAL bloggers to stop typing and get baking"
Clearly this should resonate with people. It speaks very clearly to how women of certain mindsets see the role of a homemaker, the value of pregnancy, and the importance of women who hold different views.
Referring to an expectant mother as "barefoot and pregnant" is cleary a note of disdain and gives powerful insight into how pregnancy and motherhood are viewed. Obviously, they are viewed as a failure. When people who self-identify as feminists talk about being pro-choice and not pro-abortion please remember how negatively they characterize the choice of giving life and nurturing another little human being. When a pro-life person speaks in disdainful tones about the decision to abort they are criticized for this but when a pro-choice person openly mocks the choice to give life they must realize they lose all credibility as a supposedly unbiased individual on the subject. Clearly, the choice to give life is only worth mockery.
Suzanne said: I'm not pregnant and barefoot. Or uneducated. Or servile. Or unable to reason. Or a wallflower. Or a victim. Nor are most so-con women. But I suspect many lefties need to project that image in order to create a kind of anti-feminist bogeyman that's easy to shoot down. It's easier to paint one's opponent as a false stereotype than to actually address the issues. It makes debate so dispensable.
I am not pregnant or barefoot either but I recall my pregnancies as a time of great happiness and anticipation. I'm partly sorry that the feminist movement uses such as a beautiful time in the life of a family as an insult and partly happy that they are so candid about it. It allows expectant mothers, women staying at home, women who are working but respect mothers who stay at home, and the families of those women to really ask themselves if Status of Women speaks for women in Canada. When advocates of this organization present childbearing and women who enjoy family life in such disdainful terms you have to really ask yourself some questions about whether or not that is the only voice of Canadian women that should be funded and heard.
Anti-choice, anti-same sex marriage, hell -- anti-anything-since-June-Cleaver
And yet another example of the negative attitude towards women who stay at home with their children.
Clearly, feminists do not represent us and think we are not worthy of respect or should be taken seriously. They're the new chauvinist pigs-- or should I say SOWs.
Many of the advocates of Status of Women have responded to very valid questions about why a separate funding body for women's issues is necessary and whether or not that body reflects the values of most Canadian women with mocking the decision to stay home.
These are not women who value the decision to stay home.
These are not women who value child-bearing.
These are women who applaud the decision to have an abortion (the whole "I had an abortion" t-shirt and campaign) but who talk about the choice to continue with the pregnancy and stay home with a child as "barefoot and pregnant"
These are women who frame childbearing and parenting negatively ("barefoot and pregnant") when clearly most Canadian women who have children see that as the most defining and important things that they have done.
These are women who demean the management of a household making fun of cooking, baking, doing laundy, etc rather than acknowledging them as valuable contributions.
These are women who do not seem to equally respect the choice to stay home versus the choice to work full time.
These are women who deny the diversity of voices and opinion amongst women.
In sharp contrast, I loved being pregnant with my children. Those are memories I will carry with me for the rest of my life. I never felt demeaned. I am sorry some women have to mock that.
I love to be able to take care of them. I am thankful I am able to do this full-time. I am sorry that not all women value that.
I love to bake them cookies and cinnamon buns. I like to watch my kids lick the spoons after I make the batter. I remember doing that with my mom on saturday afternoons. I delight in this time of their life. I am sorry that not all women see value in that and frame it as demeaning.
I acknowledge not all women or men have the option of staying home and believe that we have a responsibility to support those families with good child care options. I believe that Stephen Harper's child care funding model of $100/month is flawed and regressive.
People who advocate for SOW by mocking traditional choices and insulting people's children do little to inspire people to re-consider. They simply re-affirm that SOW does not represent them. They do not even value them for anything other than the financial contribution that they make through taxation.