Saturday, August 30, 2008

The Audacity of Home

Willl Palin's nomination to be McCain's VP escalate the "mommy wars?"

Huffington Post writer Kim Stagliano, and mother of three, wonders if conservatives will accept Palin given her choice to put her career ahead of her family,

"So how does a mother of five children, especially one with special needs, accept the nomination for a job that will put her within a heartbeat of the Presidency and take yet take her away from the five heartbeats of her family for at least four years and still be considered conservative? If she were a Democratic nominee, wouldn't the religious right be attacking her already?

I believe in a woman's right to any career she desires. Yet as a mother of kids whose needs have taken precedence over my career for over a decade, I know the realities of special needs parenting. And I find myself asking a question that makes me feel like Donna Reed: Once you've chosen to have five children, and your infant has special needs, who needs you more, your family or your job? And if I can ask this touchy, old fashioned question, I wonder if conservatives will warm to a woman willing to make such a profound family sacrifice."

Obviously, as a mother who is raising six children instead of climbing the corporate ladder, I think staying at home to raise a family is the best choice and the most rewarding career. Children need their mother. But will conservatives reject Palin simply because she's chosen a different path - that of the working mother? I doubt it, most conservatives were looking for a reason to like McCain and Palin's nomination provides the reason.

Stagliano will be happy to know, however, that not all conservatives are warming to Palin. Vision Forum founder and homeschooling father of eight, Doug Phillips writes,
"I am confident that Mrs. Palin is a delightful, sincere, thoughtful, and capable woman with many commendable virtues. But in fairness, there is nothing "traditional" about mothers of young children becoming career moms, chief magistrates, and leading nations of three hundred million, nor is this pattern the biblical ideal to which young women should aspire."
Phillips links to an article which asks, Should Christians Support a Woman for the Office of Civil Magistrate? and answers with a resounding, no. Phillips is politically active and influential in the conservative homeschool movement, so there will likely be more critics of Palin in the coming months.

The larger question is how can liberal women challenge her decision to go back to work, when they would fully defend her decision to abort any of her babies prior to birth? And if we're supposed to reject Palin on her family choices, what about the Obama family choices?

Let us not forget, it was Obama who was critical of fathers for not being at home with their kids when he was only home ten days last year. Michelle Obama also admitted that her "peace of mind improved" when her mother began to take care of their girls. I feel a little bit like Gloria Steinham asking this: Should women really believe Obama will work for the best interest of the women in this country, when he can't even work in his own home more than ten days a year? Why are liberated women warming to a man who is willing to be so selfish?

If Stagliano expects conservatives to be critical of Palin for choosing to work, then she should also expect liberal women to challenge Obama to step up to the kitchen sink, help his wife, and be a dad. This is after all, 2008. Obama is a man of change. He should be leading the pack and setting the pace for all of the other workaholic, power-hungry, men in America and giving hope to the millions of wives with deadbeat husbands. He could even write a book, The Audacity of Home.

I'm sure this will be discussed in detail in Stagliano's next Huffington Post column.

This may also be of interest: Crunchy Con author and journalist with the Dallas Morning News, Rod Dreher, enthusiastically blogged about Palin's decision to educate her daughter at home using Alaska's IDEA program. One of the requirements is parental involvement, "To participate in our homeschool program, at least one parent/guardian must be in the home actively engaged in the education of the children."

I'm not sure how Palin can be a VP and home educate, I have a hard time keeping up with my kids and my blog! But then again, she probably won't have to do much cooking or cleaning in her new house.

More links from the conservative blogosphere:
Ladies Against Feminism founder, Jennie Chancey, strongly disapproves and asks "Have we completely lost our "righteous resistance?"

Kelly Crawford, decided to talk about Sarah Palin too, "The message is "women can have it all"...and it is a lie, because they can't."

Terry has been thinking so much about this her head hurts. She's still leaning toward McCain despite some reservations about Palin. She's has quite a lively discussion going here, too.

Now that she's had time to think about it, Holly a homeschooling mother of eight, says McCain's pick was a brilliant choice."

Kari says Palin's nomination has "made me take an even closer look at McCain.

I blogged about Palin's choice to homeschool at the Homeschool Blog Awards blog.

Sherry, at Semicolon, looks at Palin's ideas on a few issues and concludes, "For my money, she sounds a heck of a lot better than Joe Biden, and she looks better. too."

Author Bodie Theone wrote a very thought provoking piece about politics, abortion, and leadership. In her opinion, "Sarah Palin is a DEBORAH who says, "We will not accept corruption in our government! We will not discard a precious human life for the sake of ease!"

Classical homeschool author, Doug Wilson, opines "On the level of political strategy, this was absolutely a brilliant move. Not only was it brilliant, it was brilliant on multiple levels." He goes on to say that despite the biblical issues of women in leadership, Palin may be a Deborah.

Surprisingly even the Bayly blog had a nice word for Palin.

Stephanie says, "Wow, what a day for politics!" She thinks McCain's pick might have been a bit "reckless."

I enjoy reading the variety opinions on this nomination. There are certainly many aspects to consider. If you've blogged about it, leave a comment and I'll add it to the post.

More links:

After voting for Ron Paul in the Michigan primary, Sallie, is thinking about putting a McCain/Palin sign in her yard.

Kathy thinks ignorance of the Bible and the Constitution has created the mess we're in today.

Conservative speaker and author, Voddie Baucham, isn't happy and asks "Are Evangelicals thinking on this one, or just following in lockstep behind their fearless Republican leaders?"

Evers Ding thinks we might be asking the wrong questions about Palin. "If I, as a conservative Christian, vote for McCain/Palin, am I truly supporting her personal views on feminism or motherhood? I think not. I am simply saying with my vote that that particular ticket represents the best option for the advancement of a particular political agenda. And in this respect, we find ourselves in agreement with Palin’s positions..."

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