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.