Life Without Baby

Filling the silence in the motherhood discussion

It Got Me Thinking…About High Drama Season October 16, 2012

By Kathleen Guthrie Woods

In the U.S., we’re all caught up in drama, controversy, glamour, and intrigue. Whether you follow the election season or the Oscar season, things get pretty heated and competitive around here.

I hadn’t thought about the two in the same breath until last year when I recommended a great movie to my parents, a compelling drama that starred one of our most popular leading men. “We don’t support his films,” my father informed me, “because we don’t like his politics.”

What the fruitcake?! Unless we’re talking about some slanted documentary, one has nothing to do with the other. That’s just crazy talk! (Sorry, Dad.) I mean, let’s take this to the (even more) extreme. That’s like choosing a loaf of bread based on the color of its wrapper. Or buying a car based on who has the most entertaining TV commercial. (I’ll take good gas mileage and reliability over 30 seconds of giggles any day.) Or recommending my drycleaner solely because he’s childfree.

And there we have it. I have no idea whether or not my drycleaner is married, has children, or lives with a mannequin dressed like his mother (which, granted, would be psycho). I recommend him because he works miracles for me and he is a genuinely nice guy. I go to movies because they transport me out of my everyday cares, they delight and inspire me. I vote for elected officials because I believe they will do the right things to make our city/country/world a better place.

This in part explains why I’m so sick and tired of having parenthood thrust upon me in political speeches (“Mom-in-Chief”) and celebrity tabloids (“How [Star of New Movie] Got Back Her Pre-Baby Bikini Body!”). I don’t care. For me, it’s less about who you are and more about what you do. When politicians and magazine marketing departments cater only to the parents, they are essentially telling me, one of the childfree people, “Your contributions and concerns aren’t as important.” And that’s not just crazy talk, that’s ignorance at its worst.

Kathleen Guthrie Woods is a Northern California–based freelance writer. She is mostly at peace with her childfree status.

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4 Responses to “It Got Me Thinking…About High Drama Season”

  1. Maria Says:

    I don’t shop at WalMart because of their business practices and they way they treat their employees. I will also pay a little more to shop locally because I like the owner and I want to support his business and the employment of his workers. I feel like if I have to spend my money, I want it to go where I feel it will do some good. But a political viewpoint will not sway me either way.

  2. ivfmale Says:

    I’m sorry, but I would agree with your father. If the actor made the equivalent of your income, then it wouldn’t matter what his or her politics were.But to support one of his films where he is making 20 million or more per film, it is supporting his politics. You are enabling the actor to contribute a large amount of money towards causes you are against.

    We all talk about how important voting in an election is. What we do not realize is we vote everyday with our wallet living in a capitalist society. I vote to no longer shop at CVS for repeated rude service. I vote to continue my cable because I’m happy with the service.

    Your father is standing up for what he believes, just as you are. While I do agree with your father, I can’t help but admire you both.

    • Maria Says:

      My husband agrees with you on the film issue. I asked him to go see a Roman Polansky film last year and he couldn’t believe I would go. I really wanted to see the film and he went for me, but afterward he regretted it and talked more about how he felt he just financially supported a criminal than the film itself. I think he’s right and wouldn’t go see another film by RP.

  3. Wolfers Says:

    Visiting family recently, I was reminded right away at the kitchen table- “Don’t talk about religion, politics or money.” We were this close to get into a food fight (well, I said food fight since I was tempted to throw the homemade apple pie at an uncle who said he missed the ‘old good days where women stayed in the kitchen’ thro I assume I scored when I said “then why do your wife work when you stay home and play with your vintage cars?”…)
    With that in mind, with social media (Internet and social networking links), I have seen how fierce folks are with stepping up on the soapbox when it comes to politics, religion and money, lately (basically this year- perhaps that’s what Mayans mean… end of the equiette and respecting different opinions/worldviews but welcoming outspoken and warring, criticizing folks for being different from one other)..
    For me, I shop locally and go places that I like. I although do avoid places with policies (such as Walmart, with their horrible treatment toward workers- I *had* worked there and I can speak firsthand, I’d not recommend anyone to work there unless you’re absolutely desperate)…. I know there’s some places that folks disagree with- but hey, you cannot stick ONE person’s belief to the WHOLE company… to me, that’s silly… Although I have to say- they need to remove that silly old law that corporations are persons… Oy.. if it doesn’t eat, poop, cry or speak, then it ain’t a person.


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