Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Whose Children Count

image  Unless you have been living on an isolated Island without Internet, or cable television you are aware that Angelina Jolie recently gave birth to twins via c-section.  Paparazzi were all over the hospital attempting to get pictures of the newborns.  Angelena and Brad are splashed over the cover of various magazines.  While I celebrate the birth of any child, I am really starting to get irritated by the amount of attention that this is getting.

Angelina is the mother of 6 through adoption, and natural birth.  Very few have bothered to comment on her quickly growing family.   Let's imagine for one moment that Angelina and Brad are not successful actors.  Let's imagine for a minute that both are working minimum wage jobs.  How does this change our view of their fertility?  What would happen if we were to remove "Brad" altogether from the situation and make Angelina a single mother living on welfare and government subsidies?

It is quite common to hear people say that if a woman gets pregnant while on the system that her benefits should not increase irregardless of the fact that the child will also suffer.  Women are punished for being poor and for getting pregnant, yet we do everything in our power to ensure that this situation does not change.  Insurance plans don't cover abortion or contraception, so how many options are we really leaving open? 

As a society we pay a lot of lip service to respecting motherhood, but in truth unless you are of a certain colour or class, it is more likely that you will be punished, or somehow stigmatized for "choosing" to give birth.  The pro life movement has dedicated itself to ending abortion but offer no good solutions to help women who decide to keep their babies.  There is no social conversation about socialized daycare to make it easier for single mothers to work and raise their children.  We "support" a woman staying home to raise her children but if she has to be on social assistance to do it,  she is labelled a "welfare queen," and is told to be grateful, as it is the social myth that these women are living in luxury. 

Age is even a factor in our discrimination. If it is a young woman that happens to be pregnant, even without hearing her story we are quick to judge her. The reactions to the so-called pregnancy pact made it clear that we don't support the choice to become pregnant. These girls were continually referred to as stupid. Imagine that they became pregnant in a woman friendly world, where each child was welcomed as the blessing that it is. Imagine that this occurred in a world that had daycare centres in all schools so that girls who became pregnant could continue their education. Imagine a world where all new mothers had access to free prenatal care and parenting classes.  The problem is not that these young women got pregnant, the problem is that these women got pregnant in a world that does not value women, and reproduction unless you fit into a very narrow category.

Our social obsession with the pregnancy of celebrities is a confirmation of which bodies matter in this society.  We care more about these privileged babies than the children that everyday go to school without breakfast.  As the homeless rate continues to rise with the mortgage crises, and the failing economy, this false alignment with the rich and powerful is a symbol of the anomie that we are facing.  We need to begin to care whether or not the child next door has enough to eat, or warm clothing to get through the winter.  We need to care not only because it is the human thing to do, but because children are our future, and they collectively represent our greatest potential.

To continue to expect women to suffer quietly the daily humiliations of poverty and motherhood is cruel.  When poverty is combined with racial stigmatizations it can lead to even more tragic results.  There is a connection between the fact that most black single mothers live in poverty, and the high rate of young black men in prison.  There is a connection between the poverty of black families, and the high drop out rates.  As we move increasingly towards a technological society those that already live on the margins will be further pressed into more desperate measures to survive. We do not live in a meritocracy or those that currently occupy the bottom sphere of the race and class hierarchy would not be where they are.  No one works harder than a single mother.  The problem is as a society, we do not understand that what these women do is labour.  No group of people work harder than the working class, who in many cases have two, or even three minimum wage jobs, and yet we tell them to work harder, or blame them for their poverty, rather than the system that impoverishes.  The lie that people are not trying hard enough is circulated by the ruling one percent so that we will be blind to the ways in which the system not only creates poverty, but ensures that certain bodies are destined for a lifetime of poverty. So when I here people like Obama, or Bill Cosby talk about personal responsibility I want to ask them, have you no shame sir? Where is your responsibility?  It is far easier to sit in judgement and lecture people on the fallacy of their ways, than to offer concrete solutions that will make a difference.

Angelinas tribe of children matter socially, but only because of the status of their mother and father.  I would like to live in a world where  children regardless of race, class, or ability are celebrated.  When we begin to validate the humanity of the least amongst us, we show our potential as a species.  Congratulations Brad and Angelina, but I would also like offer my congratulations to the uncelebrated children that were born in ghettos, or in villages, and slums globally.  Though certain factions are greedily plotting ways to exploit you young ones, it is my hope that you will rise up, and offer some sense of decency, to this clearly unbalanced and troubled world.


42 comments:

Joe said...

Does celebrating children mean being able to take good care of them? I can barely support the two that I have. 8 would bankrupt me. I've always thought that lead to the animnus against large families by people with love income.

Ebony Intuition said...

I'm actually really disgusted with the amount of attention she is getting for giving birth, like you mentioned it shows and proves who's bodies count in society.

"The problem is not that these young women got pregnant, the problem is that these women got pregnant in a world that does not value women, and reproduction unless you fit into a very narrow category."

Very true, people always scorn the women and never the man that gets them pregnant.

For example, I work in a bank that is predominately women in the office. For the past 3 years about 10-13 women have had children, some married, some not etc. So far everyone has been joyful when we hear that someone is expecting, recently a black women who works in the dept beside me announced she is pregnant. And people within the office don't seem to be happy about it in comparison to the other women who have had children. This is her fourth child, all the children have different fathers and that seems to be upsetting people a lot.

bfp said...

ebony--the same thing happened to me at a place I worked--a married black woman waited until really late in life to have babies, and so she had her kids really quick, three children in three years. When she announced she was pregnant again with her third child, everybody smiled, clapped for her, and then waited until she left the room so they could all talk about why they hell she couldn't stop popping them out.

This was a married woman upper middle class who had followed the "feminist" example of being economically stable and achieving her dreams before she had her kids!

renee, i've been following you for a while, I love your site and your comments across blogland. thanks esp for pointing out the differences between older women and younger women giving birth.

harrietsdaughter said...

It's also interesting to compare the reaction to the pregnancies of Angelina Jolie and that of Erykah Badu. One woman and her children are celebrated (oh, and remember the Tom Cruise baby a couple of years ago) and another woman is denigrated. Media outlets are spending millions of $ on pics of these wealthy families while children across the globe die of hunger or easily treated diseases.

Daomadan said...

Excellent analysis. I have to admit that I am so caught up in ignoring celebrity news that I didn't even make the connection between how we raise up one group, or class, of people (wealthy celebs) while we denigrate another. Comparing Jolie to Badu only shows the horrible biases in our society.

This reminds me of an excellent post I read on racialicious.com about Madonna and her adoptions and how she is seen, by white mainstream society, as a "savior" to "poor brown children from Africa."

Meadester said...

I couldn't care less about Angelina, or for that matter Tom Cruise, or Erykah Badu. I don't care who has how many children of any color, under any marital circumstances as long as they can support them.
But as long as my tax dollars go to support other people's children, it is my right to point out to them that until they can support the children they already have, they have more important things to do than get laid. It may not make a difference, just as criticizing the Iraq war or other things that could be considered misuse of tax money don't necessarily make a difference, but it is still right to say what you believe.

tanglad said...

And it's interesting to note historical examples of which mothers get criticized for reproduction. In Los Angeles in the early 20th century, for ex, yellow Japanese farmer mothers who kept having kids were the targets. By the 1920s, the target shifts to Mexican moms. Always contrasted with the virtuous, prudent white mom. It's amazing how motherhood has been and continues to be racialized.

Also, why do people think they can assumptions about one's economic status? Many families are a paycheck away from poverty level A job loss, a death in the family, an unexpected illness. Families that have been middle class could easily be bankrupt with any of these things. But people feel comfortable and even self-righteous when they make judgments about moms who could not afford to take care of their families.

cooper said...

I rarely if ever read celebrity news as it just doesn't interest me. I personally guess Jolie is a raving psycho.

I understand meadsters feeling on not wanting to support those who keep having children when they can't afford them, but as there has to be proper access to health care, information , and birth control, institutions which make it easier to get a good public education everywhere, go to college, and so on in order for those feeling to be justified the feeling are not really justified.

We don't have such a system.



As I see it as time goes on that gap you speak of between the top and the bottom gets wider, less people have access to decent education and health care and the problem perpetuates unless it is made an issue right now.

bfp said...

in regards to the poor mother being supported by tax dollars: Why do we insist that poor mother's fertility must be controlled as a means of controlling and becoming more efficient spenders--to the point that welfare mom's are "encouraged" to become sterilized--but there is not the similar forms of accountability being put into place for those white rich males that inefficiently spend our money engaging in wars that require a billion dollars a week worth of funding and yet provide no return?

Is it just easier to go after lower income mothers? Or do we enjoy going after low income mothers? Or do we support the inefficient and unproductive wars?

Supernetuser said...

This is actually sounding like an intelligent debate. I'm not having kids, I don't want the attention for having them, I don't care. What I do absolutely get annoyed by is people telling me, you should have kids. Its like, you don't know me, you don't know my reason for not spawning or being a breeder, I don't want them, bottom line. Deal with it world. I can definitely cheer on the ones who do choose to reproduce though, that's for sure.

Renee said...

@meadster and supernetuser...both of express concern at not having to support someone else children. Should these same children balk at having to work to pay you social security benefits when you retire? Should these same children balk at having to pay taxes on the debt that you incurred in their name? Life is cynical and children belong to the world. They are the responsibility of us all.

Renee said...

@bfp thanks so much!

LaJane Galt said...

ready for more hypocrisy google HHS leaked draft regulation defining contraception as abortion!

sophiefair said...

great post! i followed the link from shakesville.

one stupid little nit-pick though, angelina has 6 children now. yes, it bothers me that i know this. and yes, i can name them.

Meadester said...

Renee said...
@meadster and supernetuser...both of express concern at not having to support someone else children. Should these same children balk at having to work to pay you social security benefits when you retire? Should these same children balk at having to pay taxes on the debt that you incurred in their name?


Yes, they should balk! I am not counting on living off my own savings and investments not Social Security, when I retire. For those less fortunate than me, I would like to see SS at least partially privatized so that the money they pay in goes into productive investments not dependent on other people's taxes. For current retirees I'd recommend selling federal properties, as the Cato Institute has suggested, and creating a trust fund with that money. I know that such a system would not be without problems, but Chile has done well with privatized Social Security, and it could hardly be worse than our current pyramid scheme.

As for debt I incurred in their name, it wouldn't have been incurred had it been up to me. If today's children grow up to a lead a tax revolt I will gladly support them against the greedy politicians, bureaucrats and lobbyists who run up the deficit. I will do so even if it means losing my Social Security check (assuming SS is even solvent by the time I retire).

ouyangdan said...

incredible post, Renee!

I was an unmarried pregnant woman. I know what you are writing about.

I wish I had more to add than what EI and BFP said, but I don't. Well put.

Shahtia said...

The media has complained about Angelina Jolie as well. They joked that her home is just an expensive foster home and she is having babies out of wedlock. I think the real issue is that men make most of the laws and policies whereas the women are living it out. As an attorney, mother, and woman I know that if I had to choose to be rich and child less or poor and have plenty of kids I would choose to have the kids. It would probably take a woman to understand that and a woman who actually enjoys children. By expecting the Government to take care of us "welfare", etc we also relinquish certain rights. It is like when you are in your parents home you have to abide by their rules. The same situation. Angelina Jolie can definitely take care of herself and those children where as a large percentage of impoverished children wind up being taken care of by taxpayers or the state, in prison, etc. If Angelina Jolie were Halle Berry she would get the same media coverage she is getting now. It's more about class and economic status than race.

bfp said...

By expecting the Government to take care of us "welfare", etc we also relinquish certain rights.

I don't agree. We don't give up any rights because the government supplies roads or sewage treatment. If we give up any rights, it's that we give up the right to not pay taxes. We aren't expected to only use one toilet, or use one toilet one time a day--we aren't expected to physically hold it until the government tells us that we can pee--it's just a right that we have as citizens. That's what welfare is, a right that we have as citizens. And if one group of citizens wants another group of citizens to be using that "right" less, then that particular group of citizens should be supplying other fundamental rights of citizens-the right to health care and educational programs that explain reproduction and birth control options.

The point should never be to infringe on the rights of citizens, but to strengthen those rights. And if we are going to have taxes, which many people feel we shouldn't, but right now, we do, those taxes should be used to strengthen the rights of citizens not take rights away.

Larry Geater said...

I had managed to remain mercifully unaware of the number of Brangalina's children until I read this post.

The rest of it gave me something to think and post about.

Larry Geater said...

Some of the other commenters here are complaining about supporting the People who have children that they feel are excess. Once the child is born it is in societies best interest to see it well fed and educated so that the child can grow to be a productive member of society. It is not for the mothers that we pay welfare. It is for the welfare of the children. However on might feel about their parents the children are innocents and leaving them to suffer poverty is not just wrong, it is foolish. Would you let a child suffer just so that you could spite the mother?

Renee said...

Many are more than willing to see a child do without because as a society we have been taught to value commodities over people hence the anomie that I was referring to in my post.

Drowsey Monkey said...

Ugh ... those 2 creep me out. What the hell are they doing anyway!?

Thank you for this post ... the entire thing irritates the hell outta me.

Why aren't any of the media questioning their pathological need for more children? It's odd.

mareika said...

I think Mr. Crosby is saying what needs to be said for colored people to empower themselves. And it is worthwhile for all cultures.

It can be a trap when living in poverty as you say but you push your children to do better so that they can get out of the ghetto.

Sometimes many generations can be affected. Not just one.

He is a wise man. IMO

Octogalore said...

Yeah -- I am also disgusted by the attention to what seems like an obsession, compared with the lack of attention to the number of children born in real need.

BFP -- good point about whose choices are chosen as excessive.

Larry Geater makes a good point about welfare being for the children. I do think, though, that 4 kids with 4 different fathers (per Ebony's example) is not great for anyone concerned. Those kids deserve to be celebrated as much as any kids. But their parents' choices don't.

Renee said...

@octagalore... that 4 kids with 4 different fathers (per Ebony's example) is not great for anyone concerned
The idea that a woman have children with different men is only problematic because we have so much invested in the patriarchal family. Once we change our understanding of what constitutes a family or decide to honor womens choices is this really such a bad thing. Before the advent of private property children "belonged" to their mothers. The idea that a woman can reproduce freely is something we should embrace.

Meadester said...

bfp said...
That's what welfare is, a right that we have as citizens. And if one group of citizens wants another group of citizens to be using that "right" less, then that particular group of citizens should be supplying other fundamental rights of citizens-the right to health care and educational programs that explain reproduction and birth control options.
That's where I have a problem. I don't mind being generous with people who are having hard times and need a helping hand to turn their lives around. Yes, even if they'd made some bad decisions in the past that's OK (though I don't see anything wrong in giving advice about avoiding the same mistakes in the future). What I do mind is the idea that other people have a right to what is mine.

If people need help they should appeal to others' kindness and generosity. And they should be grateful for whatever help they do get. Obviously, this is best done under a system of voluntary charity rather than one in which politicians dole out other peoples' money to buy votes. But, I'll acknowledge that government created dependency on itself won't go away overnight, and we are stuck with the present system for the foreseeable future. Given that, recipients of all types of government entitlements would get more sympathy if they admitted that they are receiving gifts and thanked the taxpayers.

bfp said...

I see what you're saying meadester, but I disagree. I understand that you think people shouldn't feel entitled--I personally disagree with that, but I see your point. But I have to ask, why is there such a hyper awareness of what poor people should be thinking and feeling? Why do we all say they should be "grateful" if they're going to live off of my money--but nobody says, poeple who have indoor plumbing should be *grateful* that I supply them with a place to take a dump? As another example, the roads in Michigan SUCK. And people constantly complain about them. But nobody, not even the libertarians (hee hee) complain and say "you know, Michiganders should show a little gratefulness for the roads that they have instead of complaining all the time, They should be *grateful* for the beat up nasty roads that I supply." Because it's a public service that men of all colors and women of all colors are using, there is no public outcry over Michiganders demanding better roads.

But for a public service that only or mostly women use, there's an incredible amount of shame, negativity and attempt to control--I think it's really essential to question why that is--and why we all stand up and fight for things as if they are a god given right when men also use them--but when mostly women are using them, we beat up and humiliate and decide how many fathers a woman's children are allowed to have.

Why do we do that?

Renee said...

@BFP...I believe that we do this because we have wrongly identified with the ruling elite. The only reason we can see the poor as a drain is because we tune out the degree to which subsidize large corporations. We believe in big corporate welfare but not for the common person. Think of the banks that have bailed out while daily people continue to loose their homes and the homeless rate rises. Who created this fiasco in the first place and yet it is the banks that the government is helping. This is truly a disconnect between worth and value.

Octogalore said...

Renee, re: "The idea that a woman have children with different men is only problematic because we have so much invested in the patriarchal family. ...The idea that a woman can reproduce freely is something we should embrace."

See, that's the thing. My objection isn't due to some fixed notion of the patriarchal family or to some notion that women's reproduction should be restrained.

It's due to what's best for the helpless little people who are left to deal with the chaos -- the kids.

I could care less if the people who take care of the kids are married, what color or class or gender or ability level they are. But I do think kids thrive on stability. I know they do.

There's no way that with four different dads, and you KNOW everyone likely doesn't get along like cream and sugar, there isn't chaos and confusion. Kids like certainty and routine. An unmarried mom, a gay couple, a group of three people who have a relationship, a divorced couple with visitation, whatever... can give it to them. I highly doubt that the four dads are all calmly and cohesively in the picture and that confusion isn't created by the absence of one or more of them for periods of time or permanently.

Also, the likelihood is that someone who has a bunch of kids with different dads is dealing with economic stability issues. Maybe not, who knows. But that isn't great for the kids either. This isn't a classist analysis, it's a food and shelter and education one. I'm not trying to impose middle class standards. But once the number of kids gets to a certain level, even a middle class family will have difficulty providing the level of medical care, nutrition, basic needs, that kids need. I know I limited my number of kids for exactly this reason, although it's now not the motivating factor. I'm not trying to impose standards on others that I don't own for myself.

This may all seem rigid, but as a mom, as a volunteer in neighborhoods where multiple absent dads are common, I don't see it as a happy equivalent. And not out of a reflexive need to impose a patriarchal dynamic.

As goes without saying, this is all about the mom's choice. These four kids deserve all the support that Jolie's kids get (and maybe more).

Meadester said...

@bfp

Most people pay for their own indoor plumbing. People who drive on the roads mostly pay more in taxes than all of the benefits they receive from the government -roads included. If there was a practical way to privatize all roads and make them pay as you go I'd be for it. (Possibly, some future version of EZpass will enable this by assessing tolls without forcing cars to slow down and disrupt traffic). But in the mean time pay who pay taxes have a right to demand their money's worth. People receiving more than they've ever paid in taxes don't have a right to demand anything because they are receiving a gift. It doesn't make them bad people but it does mean they should be grateful

And BTW, Renee, I am against all corporate subsidies and bailouts. I believe in a true free market and will do whatever you suggest to end corporate welfare.

Anonymous said...

Six children, not eight.

Anonymous said...

I don't think it's a matter of targeting low-income mothers. Do I believe that all children matter and are equal? Of course. But I also believe in personal responsibility.

I know of a single woman who lived in poverty raised three children by herself, and stopping at the third child was a conscious decision on her part because she knew she wouldn't be able to clothe, feed, and raise more than that. Personal responsibility.

jess said...

Personal responsibility.
Wow this thread has some fucktards in it.

Terri said...

Fucktard trolls, I hope you mean. Great post and comments, for the most part, though.

crankosaur said...

Good post. People have really skewed ideas about public assistance. In reality, under TANF, recipients have to complete a rigorous job search; if they don't get a job, they will be enrolled in work programs that pay far below minimum wage in order to keep receiving their benefits. Children who are born while the mother is receiving benefits aren't covered, and the amount of money that goes toward public assistance comes up to something like 0.1% of tax payer dollars.
It's easy to be "personally responsible" when you're middle class or upper class, when you have the resources (transportation, social skills, knowledge, contacts) to help you succeed, but when you're born into a poor or even a lower middle class family, there's not a whole lot to keep you from becoming destitute.
Of course, poor women don't HAVE to have kids, but they WANT to have kids. Poor women have been shown to place more importance on motherhood than women in other socio-economic brackets. For them, success in work is out of reach. Marriage, even if they can find a half-way decent partner, is often seen as out of reach because people tend to wait to marry until they can afford to, which doesn't often happen. The only thing many of these women can do to be ushered into adulthood, the only way they can be part of the "American dream", is having children.

Anonymous said...

meadster:
How about the roads you drive on that I pay for? How about the judicial system, the enforcement bureaucracy that is meant to protect you from harm? I pay for all these things. Therefore, I order you to care about other things "than getting laid" and it is my decision how many kids you have

p.s.: Your presumption that people on welfare only care about "getting laid" shows your ignorance, and your belief that you should control women’s bodies shows your stupidity and spiritual bankruptcy

Anonymous said...

meadster:
How about the roads you drive on that I pay for? How about the judicial system, the enforcement bureaucracy that is meant to protect you from harm? I pay for all these things. Therefore, I order you to care about other things "than getting laid" and it is my decision how many kids you have

p.s.: Your presumption that people on welfare only care about "getting laid" shows your ignorance, and your belief that you should control women’s bodies shows your stupidity and spiritual bankruptcy

Meadester said...

@Anonymous:

No need to get personal, unless your argument is so weak that it can't stand on its own without personal attacks.

I pay for roads and courts too. I pay more in taxes than I receive in benefits. Therefore neither you nor anyone else can claim that your giving these things to me. You are not supporting me like a dependent child as I am doing with people on welfare.

Sorry that you found the term "getting laid" too flippant. The point I was making is that new welfare babies don't come from nowhere and it would be more responsible for men and women alike to pay for the children they already have before they conceive more. I know personal responsibility is only for "fucktards" but without us fucktards where would the money to support people on the dole come from?

Renee said...

Please refrain from personal attacks when making a point.

Anonymous said...

"Does celebrating children mean being able to take good care of them? I can barely support the two that I have. 8 would bankrupt me. I've always thought that lead to the animnus against large families by people with love income."

Maybe they want you to take good care of 8 by sticking them in the ground where there's plenty of organic nutrients, water from the sky, carbin dioxide and nitrogen from the sky and sifting through worm tunnels in the soil, solar energy when they grow up enough to break the surface, etc. with no demands on struggling parents to bear any more of the burden that is work? And if someone reminds you that your kids aren't plants, that means they're telling you to have personal responsibility for knowing that your kids aren't plants, and if they're telling you to have personal responsibility then they have no shame?

"The reactions to the so-called pregnancy pact made it clear that we don't support the choice to become pregnant. These girls were continually referred to as stupid. Imagine that they became pregnant in a woman friendly world, where each child was welcomed as the blessing that it is. Imagine that this occurred in a world that had daycare centres in all schools so that girls who became pregnant could continue their education."

Glouchester High School, where those 17 kids got pregnant, does have a daycare center and those kids are staying in school!

Meanwhile, would every woman friendly world celebrate a girl giving birth before becoming a woman? It's not hard to imagine a woman friendly world celebrating the younger child and telling girls who aren't pregnant "try not to do what she did, children are better off when they're born to women and we should care about what makes children better off because we celebrate children." It's usually the women-unfriendly settings that label girls "women" as soon as they can get pregnant (and encourage their fathers to marry them off ASAP to men the girls didn't choose) instead of having an equal age of adulthood for everyone like 18 or 16 or 20, after all.

"Very true, people always scorn the women and never the man that gets them pregnant."

Not even if he raped her and that's why she had another child.

OTOH, telling men to not rape is telling them to have personal responsibility, so do people who hate rape have no shame?

"Once the child is born it is in societies best interest to see it well fed and educated so that the child can grow to be a productive member of society. It is not for the mothers that we pay welfare. It is for the welfare of the children. However on might feel about their parents the children are innocents and leaving them to suffer poverty is not just wrong, it is foolish. Would you let a child suffer just so that you could spite the mother?"

Good, and I can get it when someone who's happy to help support the child is less than thrilled with the people who made the child (including whoever didn't let the mother have enough birth control choices).

"Those kids deserve to be celebrated as much as any kids. But their parents' choices don't."

Their parents' lack of choices don't deserve to be celebrated neither.

"It's easy to be 'personally responsible' when you're middle class or upper class, when you have the resources (transportation, social skills, knowledge, contacts) to help you succeed,"

Yeah, we need to improve access to those resources for everyone! Public transit and schools are very important welfare.

"but when you're born into a poor or even a lower middle class family, there's not a whole lot to keep you from becoming destitute.
"Of course, poor women don't HAVE to have kids, but they WANT to have kids."

In other words, there's not a whole lot to keep you from becoming destitute but sometimes (not always - some women and girls are forced to give birth) there is a bit you can do to avoid making other people to drag down into destitution with you and any kids you already had when you became destitute.

BTW, what if there was public funding for matchmaking and wedding expenses for poor people who don't HAVE to get married with more ceremony than City Hall but WANT to get married with more ceremony than City Hall?

"The point I was making is that new welfare babies don't come from nowhere and it would be more responsible for men and women alike to pay for the children they already have before they conceive more."

Why single out "welfare babies"? That goes for all new babies!

"I know personal responsibility is only for 'fucktards' but without us fucktards where would the money to support people on the dole come from?"

Cutting corporate welfare is a start! Without any "fucktards" working at them where would the corporations get the money to owe and pay enough taxes to support people living on public welfare, walking and cycling on public roads, speaking up in public courts, etc.?

Anonymous said...

Whose children count?

Some arguments make it seem like all the children who already exist of people who are already parents don't count.

Think about it: no matter how many children you already have and care for, no matter how rich or poor you are...

...some people will claim that your right to be a mother or father means making another child. They'll claim that anyone who doesn't recommend making another one doesn't want you to be a mother or father at all. As if raising your existing children doesn't count as a mother or father. As if your existing children don't count as daughters and/or sons...

Jennifer L said...

It's more that we have a responsibility as people to take care of other people. Especially when it's our systems that caused them to be in trouble in the first place. People in poverty don't have access to birth control or education which leads to pregnancy. Then as a society, since we didn't give them education or birth control, we have to take responsibility when this happens. I know you work hard for your money and you've had an education and access to opportunities and that's really awesome but people in poverty don't have that. In my opinion, that's not their fault so I'd like it if they could get some help - government help. Yes, the government needs to be more accountable for where they spend our money but welfare like education, and health care are good uses of my tax money.