According to a new American study, stay-at-home moms are worth a $143,102 paycheck. But an Australian columnist didn’t take that into consideration for her latest piece.
Sarrah Le Marquand, editor at RendezView and Stellar, describes herself as a “mum of two” in her Twitter bio. But that didn’t keep her from writing on what she called the “one issue guaranteed to trigger hysteria”: stay-at-home moms. Nor did it stop her from demanding the government mandate that mothers work – in the name of “gender equality.”
On Monday, her column’s headline read “It should be illegal to be a stay-at-home mum” on RendezView, a controversial news site which boasts millions of readers, and the Daily Telegraph. “Dear mothers,” the caption to one photo commanded, “Get out of the kitchen and get back to work.”
For the basis of her argument, Le Marquand cited a recent report by the Australian government that called “inactive and/or part-time working women, especially those with children” an “untapped potential” because women who stay home or work part-time might cause “large losses” economically.
According to Le Marquand, the report’s “rallying call to utilise the potential of stay-at-home mums” was the “desperately needed voice of reason that Australians cannot afford to ignore.”
While most Australians “howl[ed] in indignation” at the report, Le Marquand agreed.
“For days you couldn’t walk past a television, radio or computer screen without encountering a defensive rant about how the most valuable work a woman can do involves nappies, play-doh, and a strict adherence” to staying home, she complained.
She even brought President Donald Trump into the equation. “[O]ur collective support for working women makes Donald Trump’s cabinet look like Women’s March HQ by comparison,” she added, attacking Trump for his male staff.
Because of the “importance of parenting,” especially right after birth, Le Marquand conceded that parents could stay home – until children reach school-age.
“Rather than wail about the supposed liberation in a woman’s right to choose to shun paid employment,” she wrote, “we should make it a legal requirement that all parents of children of school-age or older are gainfully employed.”
According to her, governments offer a “kid-glove approach” to mothers who stay at home and give “unfair tax concessions” for households with one income.
“Holding us less accountable when it comes to our employment responsibilities is not doing anyone any favours,” she bashed. “Not children, not fathers, not bosses — and certainly not women.”
True feminism stands for equality, not choice, she insisted.
“[O]nly when we evenly divide the responsibility for workplace participation between the two genders will we truly see a more equitable division between men and women in all parts of Australian life,” she concluded.
She failed to mention gender equality when it comes to pregnancy or breastfeeding. But perhaps that’s because she would hit on the fact that to strive for equality means first recognizing and celebrating inherent differences – not pretending everyone is the same.
And one way of achieving equality is to allow choices all citizens (including the unborn), not prohibit them.
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