50,000 moms

Have you all heard of this group called “Million Moms?”  You can find them on facebook or google them.  I refuse to link to them because I don’t want to generate traffic to them via my site.  Apparently this group has taken it upon themselves to “end the exploitation of our children.” (via their website).  This is a really good goal, don’t you think?  Children are exploited all over the world.  Arranged marriages at 10 years old, child labor, hunger, institutionalization of disabled children.  There’s all sorts of child exploitation to fight.  That’s a noble and worthy cause, ending the exploitation of children.

But that’s not what these people want.  They call exposure to my family exploiting children.  They believe that Ellen Degeneres being JC Penney’s spokesperson is exploiting children.  They want to keep their children from “negative influences” – namely, me.  

Don’t let their website fool you with the doublespeak.  There might be some things they want to boycott or promote that make sense.  But these are the people who spearheaded the boycott against Chaz Bono on Dancing With the Stars and are backed by the American Family Association, which is a major player in the war against equal marriage rights.  In fact, the latest “boycott” revolves around an Archie comic that portrays two gay characters getting married.

I struggle with involving myself in these arguments.  I’d rather fight for better insurance coverage for infertility or worry about my job interview from last Friday.  I’d rather advocate for kids who have no voice or animals who are being abused or something that doesn’t force me to stand up again and again and say that I am just as worthy as any of you of being visible, being valued, and being loved.

I learned a long time ago not to subject myself to the comments written on any given article about gay issues.  The depths people will sink to cloaked in the veil of anonymity never ceases to amaze me.  But I’d never taken the time to really explore One Million Moms website and realize the true breadth of their hate.  They have 29 pages of “issues” ranging from J. Crew “planting the seeds for gender identity confusion” to Grey’s Anatomy using “blasphemy” (I didn’t even know people really used that word seriously anymore), to Clorox’s new commercial showing two hot guys.  I’m trying to figure out why they haven’t boycotted Healthy Choice since Jane Lynch (an out lesbian) is their spokesperson.  

Sure, do I think some things on tv aren’t appropriate for my children to watch?  YES!  So you know what I do?  I change the channel.  You know what my parents did when something wasn’t appropriate?  They changed the channel.  Heck, turn off the tv altogether if you have to.  Don’t shop at JCPenney, don’t buy Clorox, don’t watch Glee, don’t watch Grey’s Anatomy, don’t buy from sponsors who advertise on those shows.  

But I draw the line at you saying that exposure to gay people is child exploitation.  These folks have every show with any sort of gay theme on it on their radar.  It’s becoming exhausting to continually stand up and say “we’re just the same as you.”  Children aren’t born with this prejudice, adults pound it into them.  My own son said, “I wonder what gender I will marry, male or female?”  That’s how it should be.  My kids should be able to go to the prom with the date of their choice without it being a federal case.  

The hardest thing is that this group purports to be Christian, and routinely misquotes the Bible to support their cause.  Of course they go right to the “clobber passages” to back up their bigotry.  And every time I sit down to argue these issues on someone’s blog or in the comments section of an article, I feel my blood pressure go up.  I’m not going to get anywhere, and all I’m going to do is increase my stress level.

So what can I do?  I can live.  I can take my kids to school.  I can be present at baseball practice and gymnastics practice and I can post a picture of my family on my desk.  I can answer questions from people who ask them, about how I knew who I was and how I conceived my children and how I live my life.  I can teach my children that all people are worthy of love and that they can marry a boy or a girl when they grow up, or they can marry nobody at all if they so choose.  I can teach them that education is important and that respecting themselves is one of the most important things they can ever do.  I can talk to my neighbors and invite them over for BBQs and I can show up to church.  

They call themselves One Million Moms, but their facebook page only has about 50,000 “likes” on it.  I’m only one mom.  But if 10 moms read this, and they each talk to one mom and on down the line, then we’ll outnumber them before midnight hits.  

I know I have friends and readers who are much more conservative than I am, and I respect that.  But I will go toe to toe with anyone who tells me that my choice of a woman for a partner makes me unworthy of the rights and responsibilities guaranteed me by the Constitution of this country.  I am not the enemy. There are much bigger fights worthy of fighting.  Ellen on JCPenney commercials isn’t one of them.  

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5 thoughts on “50,000 moms

  1. Ok, I am so seriously pissed that anyone can call any form of love offensive for their children to see. That by shopping at Penny’s my children would walk through the store and think “GAY LOVE IS HORRIBLE!” Why would children ever even notice that link? Why would parents care if they did? I think it is SO MUCH worse to have my littles see two teens sucking face at the mall. Pishaw to being offended by same sex relationships and pawning it off as a cause that has anything to do with exploiting children! THAT is what is offensive and EXACTLY the kind of crap I am trying to protect my children from. We are good friends with you, we got your holiday card and had it hanging up until about a week ago. (why yes it did take me that long to get the cards down but I digress…) They never once mentioned that your children had two mommies. They did notice that you were all holding hands, that you and H are both tall and J and N are not, Alyssa pointed out that your family has a brother and a sister like our family does and she pointed out that you all had on the same color. Never once mentioned or noticed that you and H are both girls….not once. My point is that if when put right in her face like that she doesn’t notice nor care, then WHY, HOW could that be exploitation? Plain pisses me off what people will say in order to justify their own ignorance. Rant over. Lori out!

  2. Sigh. (((Hug)))

    It’s amazing to me the blinders that people wear – the willful compartmentalization that categorizes persons as “bad” or “unworthy” without ever having known them as people. It seems driven by a desire for homogenization, which (of course) is unattainable (and let’s be honest – not very appealing).

    And even if you accept their position on gays (which I do not!), is Ellen DeGeneres on a JCP commercial really the best vehicle for attack? A family member of mine (who has a history of being less than charitable in the realm of gay issues) once said to me, “Ellen is the one person who actually makes me wonder if I should reconsider my position. She’s just so damn likable!”

    I’m going to digress a bit here, but the contrast of true exploitation and the Ellen/JCP ridiculousness reminds me of the current meme making the rounds about why free contraception is SO important to women: because it’s expensive. OMG! $600 a year!!! WTH??? Our physical therapy bill for Sarah Kate for last month alone was almost $900!

    But of course, my child with her mild/moderate disability is “lesser” in the eyes of many, so you don’t hear our story on the news and I’ll never be called to testify before Congress. I think a lot of people need a little perspective. Arranged marriages, child labor, and actual medical care for people who need it matter – Ellen on a JCP commercial and women having to tighten their belts a little so they can have sex don’t.

    • Andi,
      I think what your family has to go through for therapy is unconscionable. But I also do believe in free contraception. The problem with arguing some of these points with me is that I’m an advocate for national health care. So I think that Sarah Kate and Nathan’s care should be a given and cost you nothing and I think that poor women (many of whom are married and have families they are supporting) who want to prevent pregnancy should also be able to do so for free, ESPECIALLY since their husbands can get viagra covered no problem. Major double standard.

      My issue with the contraception stuff is that it is specifically targeted at low income women and the assumption is we’re trying to cater to promiscuous women who don’t know how to keep their legs closed. When the reality is married women want contraception too. And to argue that they can get condoms again adds money to the budget when they’re simply struggling to feed their families. To me the answer isn’t that they should refrain from being intimate with their husbands.

      My other question on the contraception issue is what about women who get prescribed the Pill for hormonal issues? Would that be covered? Because the clear unintended consequence of that is the prevention of ovulation. Do we deny them a treatment for severe pre menstrual disorder (not just PMS, but severe issues) or periods so heavy they are unable to work because it would also mean they can have sex and possibly not get pregnant?

      The problem is that if I believe fertility treatment should be covered, then I can’t in good conscience exclude the prevention of pregnancy from covered services. But again, I believe health care is a right, not a privilege, and I think Sarah Kate should have free therapy and I’d gladly pay more in taxes to make sure that happens.

      • I hope that you understand that I wasn’t advocating that ANY health care is unworthy of consideration…just that people seem to be focusing on what color to paint the living room when the house is burning down around them. 🙂 I guess my position is that we need to put out the fire first. And don’t even get me started on Viagra being covered when contraception is not – if there ever was an example of a medication that should be a lower priority, that is it!

        You probably won’t be surprised to learn that I don’t advocate national healthcare, which I know puts me at odds with a lot of parents of special needs kids. It’s not because I don’t think we all deserve quality healthcare, regardless of our income level, because I do. Absolutely. But…it’s hard for me to not fear that under such a system my children would still be a low priority.

        You know I love you and I hope I haven’t offended you in any way. We have a great relationship because of our mutual respect for each other even though our lives are vastly different, and I would hate to think that I’ve damaged that in any way.

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