Why does the mainstream media have to ask if politicians who are also mothers can “have it all”? We never ask if dads can “have it all”; instead, we presume someone back at home (wife, nanny, second wife) is taking care of the kids and the kids are fine and we do not need to worry about them. But when a mom runs for office — or is up for any other kind of huge role, like CEO — there’s the implication that she’s going to fail in one area of her life because she has too many competing responsibilities. By asking whether she can have it all, we suggest she can’t have “it all.” There are literally hundreds of other headlines The New York Times Magazine could have used for this article and cover story about Wendy Davis, who is running for governor of Texas as a Democrat. I don’t doubt the Times Magazine article about Davis will be really interesting. I simply wish the mainstream media reported on male and female politicians more equally. [New York Times Magazine]
When a woman attempts to find some semblance of “having it all,” she automatically becomes demonized. We can’t seem to rise up in the ranks — whether it’s in the corporate world or in politics — without our personal lives, particularly our mothering skills, being called into question.
The latest female politician in the hot seat is Texas State Senator Wendy Davis, who is running for governor on the Democratic ticket. She has recently been skewered (again) for having been both a young mother and a single mother. The focus circumventing her actual politics (like her support for women’s reproductive rights) and instead revolve around how she is as a mother. A reporter for Fusion even asked Davis to respond to a blog post by Sarah Palin’s daughter Bristol Palin — seriously, her — that called Davis a woman “whose ambition and ego were so big she couldn’t have both a career and kids at the same time.” Both Jessica Luther and Carolyn Edgar wrote insightful pieces this week explaining why these allegations are egregious, erroneous, and just plain clueless.
I could spend hours picking apart what is wrong about these attacks. Instead, I’d like to note that we hardly ever see male politicians skewered for their parenting. We look past that aspect of their personal lives — for the most part, barring a mistress or financial scandal — and focus on their politics. A male politician who is also a father gets to be, first and foremost, a male politician. But a female politician who is also a mother? It’s completely different. Keep reading »
“I am pro-life. I care about the life of every child: every child that goes to bed hungry, every child that goes to bed without a proper education, every child that goes to bed without being able to be a part of the Texas dream, every woman and man who worry about their children’s future and their ability to provide for that future. I care about life and I have a record of fighting for people above all else.”
Texas state senator Wendy Davis, who is running for governor of the Lone Star State, spoke at the University of Texas at Brownsville on Tuesday and pissed off anti-choice conservatives by reclaiming the term “pro-life.” I’ve always been bothered by the term “pro-life” being used by anti-abortionists because 1) it implies that those who support Roe V. Wade are “anti-life” or “pro-death,” 2) many so-called “pro-lifers” are against abortion even when pregnancy threatens the life of the mother, 3) repealing Roe V. Wade, as many “pro-lifers” want, would result in the deaths of women who will do what they must to terminate pregnancies they don’t want, and 4) many anti-choicers are against government programs that actually support families and allow children a decent quality of life. As far as I am concerned, Wendy Davis’ definition of being pro-life is more accurate than the one anti-choicers peddle because it recognizes the lives that exist outside the womb. [Valley Morning Star]
Wooohoooo! Texas state senator/filibustering superstar/feminist icon Wendy Davis officially announced that she is running for governor of the Lone Star State yesterday. We’re so thrilled for Texas to potentially have a leader as awesome as Wendy, but to be honest, we’re also a little jealous. We want Wendy Davis to be in charge of our states too! Not to mention a few other things, such as… Keep reading »
This morning, Texas Governor Rick Perry signed devastating anti-abortion bill HB2 into law behind closed doors in an auditorium at the Texas State Capitol. As Perry and his cronies congratulated each other on passing a piece of legislation that will undoubtedly result in the deaths of some of their constituents, protesters camped outside the doors shouted “Shame!”, chanted “The blood of Texas women is on your hands!”, and sang “We’re Not Gonna Take It.” Some protesters, like those pictured above, simply taped their mouths with duct tape and held signs in silent protest. Democratic superhero Wendy Davis, Planned Parenthood President Cecile Richards, and a multitude of Texas activists have vowed to continue fighting the law. [Houston Chronicle] [Photo via NARAL Pro-Choice Texas]