The NY Times On Equal Parenting: When Mom And Dad Share It All

Full article here.

The author, Lisa Belkin, showcases a series of husbands and wives with children who are going against the grain, and attempting to create:

…“equally shared parenting,” a term the Vachons have embraced.”

There are reasonable arguments here, and issues here that affect all of us: work/life balance, family, raising children, tradition:

“The point…is not to spit at tradition for the heck of it but rather to think things through instead of defaulting to gender.”

I could be convinced. Yet, is the equality stick the best tool by which families should measure themselves and challenge these norms? Isn’t this inviting all kinds of other problems?

“Social scientists know in remarkable detail what goes on in the average American home…Any way you measure it, they say, women do about twice as much around the house as men.”

Most men already have incentive to do some of the housework if they love their wives, and wish to continue to have love, companionship, and kids (in part, a way to pass on their genes). Also, of course, social science has its limits as most good social scientists would point out.

What about biology?

“Women, she says, know that the world is watching and judging. If the toddler’s clothes don’t match, if the thank-you notes don’t get written, if the house is a shambles, it is seen as her fault, making her overly invested in the outcome.”

How many guys do you know who worry about writing thank-you notes? As the article mentions, this isn’t an option for everyone.


Later on, it pretty much becomes a parody of other hot-button liberal issues:

“Jo would not disagree with Deutch’s point that she had a role in creating that inequity — choosing to major in international rural development…”

Poor Jo…will she never win?  There’s this from a lesbian couple:

“We developed a wonky theory,” Dorea says of all that talking [sic]. “You need a rabid N.G.P. — nongestational parent. The N.G.P. has to push if you are going to get an equal relationship”

Dads-to-be take note!

Addition:  From bloggingheads: The purpose of women is to bear children?

Another Addition:  If you’re like me, you’re exasperated with this line of thought.  Even if liberalism is more grounded and deep than this, it still promotes an idealism that can be dangerous to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness for the rest of us.  When will they bottom out?  Do they need to bottom out?  How will the right respond?  What effect does this have on our institutions and our freedoms?

by wallyg

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2 thoughts on “The NY Times On Equal Parenting: When Mom And Dad Share It All

  1. You make some strong points on your critique of the article. Personally, I would be amazed to see how much the author considered biology in the subject. Would that be too daring for the NY times to add into the mix?

  2. John, thanks for commenting.

    There is moral good (mostly political) in trying to round up all the people who might respond to the article, but there’s just not enough reason there to be convincing to me.

    Maybe they’ll come around and make more sense without abandoning their principles.

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