Not the Dreams of My Daughters

As the father of two young women, an accomplished young professional and active and confident teen, I have many dreams for my two daughters. I dream that they will remain strong in their faith, that they will love and serve others and that they will work hard and find success in whatever vocation they undertake. I also dream that they will find the right men to spend their lives with – men worthy of the people they have been raised to be and who will love and cherish them as much as I do. I am confident that these dreams will come true (in fact already are for my oldest) because they are smart, confident and faith-filled young women – and because none of these dreams are dependent on what a particular President may or may not do.

It appears though that some have a different idea about what will make their daughters futures hopeful. In a new Obama Campaign Ad (yes, they are starting already!) a mother speaks wistfully about her own dreams and fears concerning her daughter’s futures. Somehow she ends up being concerned about the future availability of contraception:

“I love that my daughters dream so big and see no limits to their future. Watching their dreams unfold everyday is one of the unique pleasures of being a mom.

It is upsetting to me that in 2012 the use of birth control has become controversial. Birth control isn’t just for family planning, it’s preventative care and treatment, it’s medication that most women need and use at some point in their lives. And it is as common in a woman’s medicine cabinet as cough medicine.

Beyond that it’s a woman’s right to make decisions about her own body and her own life. This is just one reason I’m so passionate about getting you re-elected this year. We need a President who will stand up for women’s health and stay focused on jobs and economic recovery. The dreams of all our daughters are at stake. And they’re counting on us to fight for them.”

The ad is based on a letter penned by Erin Bilbray-Kohn, a mother of two daughters. I have to admit I found it somewhat contrived that a mother would spontaneously write about her hopes and fears for her children’s futures in such a way that would so neatly fit into the administration’s message on contraception. This being the internet age, it took me about three seconds to discover that this isn’t some ordinary mom – she is the daughter of the former Democratic Congressional Representative from Nevada, and a Democratic operative herself. So that is why her ‘letter’ reads like it was written by The Campaign to Re-Elect Obama – because …well it was.

This fact makes it all the more clear why the message of the ad is so out of touch with what most mothers (and fathers) actually want for their daughters (and sons). The few parents who might want the government to provide free contraceptives to the point where they are “as common in a woman’s medicine cabinet as cough medicine” probably have very few hopes and dreams for their daughters other than that they stay out of jail. To the degree that most parents consider their kids contraception it is more likely to be in terms of the hopes that their children don’t see their easy availability as a license to live lives of hedonism and debauchery.

I would contend that most parents who think about the impact the government will have on their daughter’s lives are probably most concerned with whether the government will inadequately defend their lives and property, drain their wealth with taxes and debt or threaten their liberties in the guise of social progress.

With regard to these concerns the current administration is more likely to provoke nightmares than pleasant dreams of my daughter’s future.

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8 Responses to Not the Dreams of My Daughters

  1. Justin says:

    Underaged kids need sex education, gay morals acceptance programming, and birth control handed out to them in school, but try and sell them a soda at lunch time and see what happens!!! The Feds will fine your school $15,000!!!

  2. eMatters says:

    Not surprising that she’s a Democratic ops person, but I’m a little surprised that they didn’t even try to hide it.

  3. jackhudson says:

    My impression so far is that the Obama campaign doesn’t assume the electorate is all that smart.

  4. Theresa Stokes says:

    Jack, I would agree with your sentence below and add another idea:
    “The few parents who might want the government to provide free contraceptives to the point where they are “as common in a woman’s medicine cabinet as cough medicine” probably have very few hopes and dreams for their daughters other than that they stay out of jail”…..or not get pregnant!!!!
    This ad could go further to suggest that the medicine cabinet needs condoms even more than BC, but who’s really buying this lie anyway?
    Yes, the general voting public is not very smart on the issues or the manner that the issues are framed.
    Ignorance has huge consequences.
    Thanks for the Posting Jack,
    Warm Regards,
    Theresa

  5. I read the entire transcript of the ad.
    (from here: http://youtu.be/Iu7srrECvOg where you can read the entire transcript.)

    I wouldn’t say the message is entirely out of touch with what people want because, in fact, most all women of child bearing age (married or single) have had some form of birth control in their medicine cabinets (or purse, or nightstand, or wherever.) According to CDC stats that amounts to 99% of women aged 14-44.
    (from here: http://www.cdc.gov/NCHS/data/series/sr_23/sr23_029.pdf )

    So, regardless of what parents may want for their daughters… eventually those daughters are going to want to use some form of birth control at some point in their lives for whatever reason. Sometimes they may want to use it even if it is not to prevent an unwanted pregnancy.

    If it bothers you to think about your daughters sexual future… don’t think about it.

  6. jackhudson says:

    Thanks for your comments David, a few responses:

    I read the entire transcript of the ad.
    (from here: http://youtu.be/Iu7srrECvOg where you can read the entire transcript.)

    Yes, I linked to this in the above post.

    I wouldn’t say the message is entirely out of touch with what people want because, in fact, most all women of child bearing age (married or single) have had some form of birth control in their medicine cabinets (or purse, or nightstand, or wherever.) According to CDC stats that amounts to 99% of women aged 14-44.
    (from here: http://www.cdc.gov/NCHS/data/series/sr_23/sr23_029.pdf )

    I didn’t say it was out of touch with people want – I said it was out of touch with what most parents want for their daughters. When I consider the current problems our society faces like the struggling economy, the crushing debt, the lack of national leadership, the growing disparities between incomes and opportunities, the threats to our individual liberties, growing foreign threats in the Middle East and Asia etc, etc the government’s take on contraceptives is about five-thousand and fourteen on my list of concerns.

    So, regardless of what parents may want for their daughters… eventually those daughters are going to want to use some form of birth control at some point in their lives for whatever reason. Sometimes they may want to use it even if it is not to prevent an unwanted pregnancy.

    Perhaps, but that will be their business, not the current administration’s.

    If it bothers you to think about your daughters sexual future… don’t think about it.

    It doesn’t ‘bother me’ a bit; it’s my job to think about it – and I not only think about it but I have an open and honest dialogue with all my children about their views on sexuality as all parents should. But that is my concern not the President’s.

  7. Right, but, should your daughters (and sons) become sexually active you would want them to have easy access to birth control, yes?

    The government is not forcing people to be sexually active nor is it forcing them to acquire birth control.

    I agree that society has lots of problems though we may differ exactly what those problems are. I also think that unwanted pregnancy is a problem that is pretty easy and inexpensive to address. My guess is we would both agree that abstinence and proper use of birth control is far more desirable than the alternatives.

  8. jackhudson says:

    Right, but, should your daughters (and sons) become sexually active you would want them to have easy access to birth control, yes?

    When they are adults that would be up to them; but even then such a decision has nothing to do with the government forcing organizations to subsidize birth control methods.

    The government is not forcing people to be sexually active nor is it forcing them to acquire birth control.

    It’s forcing organizations that are opposed to certain forms of birth control to provide it, and taxpayers to subsidize it.

    I agree that society has lots of problems though we may differ exactly what those problems are. I also think that unwanted pregnancy is a problem that is pretty easy and inexpensive to address. My guess is we would both agree that abstinence and proper use of birth control is far more desirable than the alternatives.

    The question in this case is really one of conscience – and in the case of birth control the government really should not be requiring anyone to provide birth control for others.

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