Sunday, January 23, 2005

liberal media my ass

This week according to some moronic NY Times columnist and Time Magazine the best thing for this country and society in general would be for women to "make a greater effort to marry early and have children...raise children from age 25 to 35. Then at 35, now that she knows herself a flexible graduate program specifically designed for parents." The reason for this throwback to the 50s is of course that this is what they did in the 50s, so they had lots of children and now they want us to have kids to take care of them. According to this moron David Brooks, if we did this, "...fertility rates would rise. That would be good for the country. We don't have enough young people to support our old people."

So instead of the normal experience of college, we should have spent that time getting our MRS degree so that we could get married right after graduation. We then need to get busy having children so that we can support the old people who didn't plan ahead when they were young. And it doesn't matter if we have goals or ambitions related to a career, we should put those on hold until after we're through raising our children. We'll know ourselves better then and can go to special mommy graduate school to get that degree. Of course we'll then be entering a workforce where we're 10 years older then the men who are also looking for entry level jobs (because they of course don't need to wait 10 years to know themselves well enough to choose a career.) Our children will be older by then but they'll still be at home and we wont' want to put in the longer hours some bosses demand, so they'll be hesitant about hiring these "older women" instead of the young men eager and willing to please. Sound familiar? Oh yes - that's what it was like when women tried to seriously start entering the workforce decades ago. It's good to know we're moving forward.

And then in a cover story so patronizingly titled 'They Just Won't Grow Up' the good folks at Time are lovely enough to be concerned about both men AND women not marrying and having babies soon enough. "Society defines an adult as a person who is financially stable with a spouse, children and a home....we're going to think about those people getting married at 18 and forming a family at 19 or 20 as an odd historical pattern rather then the norm."

Now if you want to get married right after college and start having kids - fine, swell, go for it - both my brothers did, a few of my friends did, and they're all fine and happy. But for the majority of people I know who are now in their 30s and have been married just a few years or are still single, are childless or just having fresh ones, bought their first home in the past few years or are still renting - I'd say they still considered themselves quite grown up before they hit these stringent definitions.

I love being married to Noland and I'm really looking forward to us getting our own house this year, but I wouldn't have traded in my single days, new apartment every year, and lame part time jobs (where I met many of the friends I still have to this day) for anything. And I think that (for the most part) I was a grown up most of the time. I think doing things like moving halfway across the country to an unknown city with no job and just one friend in tow, and doing so successfully, is a rather grown up thing to do. I think learning how to love living by yourself for a while is a very grown up thing to do. I think knowing that at 25 your not ready to settle down rather then doing it just because your "supposed to" is a rather grown up thing to do.

Twice random people I dated in my 20s brought up marriage to me – I think I laughed at one and just tried to ignore the conversation with the other. But imagine if I would have continued that conversation – I would have never moved to Oregon, I would have never met Noland, and I would have never had this wonderful life I have now. I may not have know then exactly why those weren’t the right moves for me, but I knew there was something, and someone, better for me out there….and that is definitely grown up.

1 comment:

fufats said...

Amen, sistah.

I also read the article in "Time", about how social scientists are absolutely befuddled with new evidence showing that people are taking longer to settle into a steady job, get married, and have kids. They compare today's situation with 30 years ago, when people got married young and settled down into a permanent career young.

What they fail to mention is that things are not at all comparable now to 30 years ago. 30 years ago you could get a high school degree and move directly into a factory job with full benefits that would pay enough to purchase a home and support a family. Now, with only a high school degree, you're gonna be working at Wal-Mart. Even a 4 year degree is no guarantee of any kind of respectable job. And as for salary - even with a Law Degree, you can look forward to at least a few years making $40k-$50k a year.

It's not like the old days when you could start your career at one job, and end up retiring thirty years later. Now, companies are intent on the bottom line and only the bottom line. Which means there's the CEO, the board, the stockholders, and the employees - most of whom probably live in India or China.

As for kids - it's kinda tough to think about having kids when you've still got to figure out how to make ends meet when both people in the house are working and you're still living paycheck to paycheck. And when you see the disgusting display of psuedo-morality displayed across this "great" land of ours (what about the childern? who'll think of the children? we have to make movies/music/video games/transportation/restaraunts/etc. safe for the children), it doesn't really want to make you bring a child into this particular world that much sooner.

Anyway, good writeup. F both those baby booming douchebags and their douchey articles. The reason we're taking so long to "figure things out" is because the generation before us screwed things up so badly.

In the meantime, I'm proud to be a rapidly aging adolescent.