I enjoyed skimming through Charlotte Raven’s Guardian piece on how the pressures of parenthood so easily force you to lose liberal principles and accept conservative reality.
I’d just like to sympathise and say it’s parenthood, but liberalism that’s the problem. I mean that guru of liberalism, John Stuart Mills, in inadvertently hit the nail on the head when he pondered how come 19th England could be so democratic when its empire was not, particularly, democratic. Hello, that’s liberalism, that’s idealism. It is by its very nature fantastic at providing glossy vision, which is when you dig down deep, not where reality is. Hence, why Charlotte Raven is finding her liberal principles out of step with the messy reality of child-rearing.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m a child of Benjamin Spock (“His ideas about childcare influenced several generations of parents to be more flexible and affectionate with their children, and to treat them as individuals..”) and all. But you see lots of middle class well-meaning couples who do fantastically well in their careers, only to fall down in their personal lives. Why? Er, I blame the liberalism vs reality conflict. (Tomorrow it will be something else for me to blame).
BTW not many people know this but Spock was set to run with Dr Martin Luther King Jr on a joint presidential ticket, cut short by King’s assassination.