11 September 2008

I am not a hockey mom.

And I am going to go ahead and blast Sarah Palin's parenting.

Not because of choices her children have made. I know full well that kids don't always behave in the ways their parents would like, and they deserve our continuing unconditional love and support anyway.

What I find utterly damning about Sarah Palin's parenting is that her position on abortion would potentially cause her own children to endure a pregnancy that was the result of rape or incest. (Citation here.) The lack of compassion present in that position is incomprehensible to me.

Here's a story: my own child was not the result of a neatly planned pregnancy. But I was (and am) married to a good man, in whom I could see the heart of a great dad, and I consciously *chose* to have a baby. And let me state this in unequivocal terms: it was the BEST, most joyous decision I ever made. The fact that it was a decision informs my parenting every day. This is the path I chose, and I have the responsibility to do everything in my power to make it worthwhile for all of us. I make mistakes--we all do. But I choose to do my best to show my kid that he is wanted and cherished, absolutely.

That's my story. Here's another one, abbreviated and incomplete, because it's not mine. In high school, I was friends with a girl. She was being raised by a single mom, and their finances were tight. Still, she found a way to get herself to college. At some point, she was still broke, she needed to get from point A to point B, and for whatever reason, hitchhiking was the option that she chose. She was picked up by a long-haul trucker, and he raped her. She got pregnant, and she had an abortion.

That story haunts me. She was someone I knew, and if I couldn't imagine myself in that position, not exactly, I could imagine her in that position. I could imagine her pain. I shudder at having to make a decision in that situation, and I cringe at the at the idea of a woman who believes she could make it for someone else. For her own daughters.

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