Whether you have been paying attention to the cable news shows, reading blogs or checking out the trending topics on Twitter, you may have come across the phrase “Mommy wars.”
The last time this so-called war on “Mommy” was given media attention was during the Clinton presidency.
After President Clinton was in office the media was silent on this phony war – until now.
Mitt Romney has been vocal about his wife Ann playing a significant part in his campaign, specifically where women’s issues and the economy are concerned. In response on CNN, Democratic strategist Hilary Rosen said that Ann Romney has “never worked a day in her life” – a comment that stirred up a bit of controversy.
Almost immediately, President Obama distanced himself from Rosen and said that he and his administration believe that stay-at-home mothers are an invaluable part of society.
Ann Romney has gone on the record to defend her choice to stay at home and raise five boys.
When Rosen eventually went back on CNN and apologized for the remark, that should have been the end of the discussion.
Clearly it wasn’t because phrases such as “the Mommy wars are back” and “the war on mothers” began popping up on blogs and cable news channels. Fox News, in particular, took its outrage to a whole new level. Its news anchors and pundits didn’t even blink before attacking Rosen for her comments, and continued to do so even after she apologized.
Since the controversy, both Romneys have said to supporters that this has been a “gift” to their campaign.
Upon hearing that, I began to wonder if this gift was one that could certainly land Mitt Romney in the White House in November?
Naturally, Jon Stewart quelled my fears by digging up a clip of Mitt Romney saying that he wanted individuals who have children and are on welfare to have the dignity of work. It’s a little different from the rhetoric he has been spouting more recently.
I think what’s most important about the controversy over what Rosen said is that the media created it.
Now that Rick Santorum is out of the race and Newt Gingrich refuses to follow suit, even though his time as a prospective candidate is waning, the 24-hour news desks have to shift focus from the Republican primaries to the general election.
This means that anything representatives of either party say will be discussed ad nauseam by the cable news shows.
Although I am not a mother, I can understand both sides of the issue. My sister is raising two young boys and, until recently, she was a stay-at-home mother. However, in order to provide for her children, she needed to work.
People can say that motherhood is a legitimate career, and that’s fine. I won’t argue with them because it is hard work and I’ve seen that with my sister raising my nephews. However, it’s not the hardest job in the world.
I’ll even bet that my sister would find trying to run a country or come up with a cure for a debilitating disease more stressful than making sure two kids have their homework done and are taken care of.