Mother’s Day is a celebration not only of mothers but of all women who are significant in our lives. As a nation, we have made fantastic progress in women’s rights, using the last 50 years as comparison. Despite all the improvement, it still is not enough.
Almost everyone loves babies because their only job is to be cute. However, when people have to choose between a baby and its mother, most would choose the infant and completely forget about the mother. This is made especially clear during childbirth.
As a result, the U.S. has the highest maternal mortality rate in the industrial world.
The CDC Foundation has found that of the 700 to 900 maternal deaths each year in America, an estimated 60 percent of them were easily preventable.
Dr. Elliott Main, medical director of the California Maternal Quality Care Collaborative, said that “the deaths could have been prevented through early recognition, teamwork and a list of well-rehearsed treatments.”
Doctors and nurses are not prepared or trained adequately for when a birth goes wrong, so when the new mother is in critical condition, medical staff are unable to solve the problem efficiently.
Thankfully California, a state that is predominantly liberal, followed the footsteps of European countries in establishing regular protocols for birthing emergencies. Since 2006, California has cut its childbirth mortality rate down by 55 percent.
Then, there are those who wish to end their pregnancy: teens, financially troubled families and victims of sexual assault. Single mothers get shamed by society for getting pregnant in the first place, and then shamed again when they want to prevent all the work that comes with caring for a child.
Last month, Republican representative Tony Tinderholt of Texas proposed that “both women who have abortions and physicians who conduct the procedure could be charged with homicide, a charge that can carry a sentence of the death penalty in the state.” This is punishing women who want to prioritize themselves. Many people who commit their first murder do not get a death sentence, and they do not kill to take care of themselves.
Tony Perkins and other members of the conservative Family Research Council state that “abortion should not be allowed even in cases of rape.” This ideology desires to force victimized women to live with their past and raise it as their own.
The proposal did not pass thanks to the Democrats and other sane members of Congress, so Texas will not be devoid of women.
There are also women who do not want to be mothers, ever. Women are seen as mothers, no matter what age they are. Toy companies, though less often now, sold baby dolls with bottles and diaper changing features and marketed them to little girls.
The CDC advises all women to prepare for pregnancy once they hit menstruation; in other words, women should always act as if they are pregnant.
Laura Scott, author of “Two Is Enough: A Couple’s Guide to Living Childless by Choice,” interviewed married couples and found that most women were not aware that they had a choice.
This shows how forced the idea of motherhood is, which causes many people to support the idea rather than think critically about what it actually means.
The American standard expects women to drop everything they have and care for a baby they don’t want, as if it is their only purpose in life, but women are so much more than caretakers.
People forget to think about how much work and money actually goes into caring for a child, and how that can force someone to care for themselves less, in fear of being called a bad parent.
The fact is that we all used
to be babies, so we all should be encouraged to live the best quality of life
that we can.