A Word on Beto and Fatherhood

 

Already it seems Beto, the wanna-be Senator from Texas, won’t be getting quite the same fawning media treatment he received when he was head to head against Sen. Ted Cruz. A piece today in Vox took on comments Beto made about who does the heavy lifting parenting-wise in the O’Rourke household:

Beto O’Rourke, the former Texas senatorial candidate who announced his run for president on Thursday, has three children. Sometimes, he even takes care of them.

The issue of his family came to the fore on Thursday when O’Rourke told a crowd that his wife, Amy Sanders O’Rourke, was raising their kids “sometimes with my help.”

The comment, some said, was meant as self-deprecation and an acknowledgment of the hard work Amy O’Rourke did for their family. But despite his intentions, Beto O’Rourke revealed a fundamental inequality of American life: While men throughout history have been able to rely on their wives to provide child care while they fulfill their political ambitions, women have rarely been able to count on partners to do the same. And as New York Magazine writer Rebecca Traister pointed out, a woman who joked about being a part-time parent while on the campaign trail would be harshly criticized — and might find her political career over before it began.

The piece is, of course, framed in the fundamental unfairness of the roles of mothers and fathers. I’m not really biting; men and women have different biological roles in the family, and as much as the Left wants to undo the biological programming we have all come with, it’s impossible and futile.

However.

There is something to be said for Beto’s involvement as a father. Just because his wife takes the lead (an acceptable choice made in a lot of households, including our own) doesn’t mean he can surrender his role as a father completely.

When he was asked last year if he was running, O’Rourke gave an unequivocal no, citing concern for his family.

So how did Beto come to the decision to run, despite having stated previously that his family couldn’t survive a run for the White House? Well, he went on a “find yourself” road trip. Without his family.

Things don’t have to be fair between men and women, but that doesn’t mean Beto’s commitment to the most important people in his life shouldn’t be questioned by folks considering him for the highest office in the land.*

 

* And yes, this is the biggest strike against the current President in my book. It says a lot about your character how you treat the most important people and commitments in your life.

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There are 23 comments.

  1. Member

    Bethany Mandel: Sometimes, he even takes care of them.

    This, in a roundabout way was the biggest failure of Obama. He is apparently a faithful husband and good father, but never used his bully pulpit to stress the virtue and importance of this; to not only the black community, but us.

    Robert Francis (Beta) O’Rourke is being made out to be the white Obama. He could have gained some credibility – and one-upped Obama – if he had stuck to his guns with what he said in that video. But it turns out he’s just another gutless politician.

    • #1
    • March 14, 2019 at 4:18 pm
    • 10 likes
  2. Member

    Bethany Mandel:

    So how did Beto come to the decision to run, despite having previously stated his family couldn’t survive a run for the White House? Well, he went on a “find yourself” road trip. Without his family.

    Things don’t have to be fair between men and women, but that doesn’t mean Beto’s commitment to the most important people in his life shouldn’t be questioned by folks considering him for the highest office in the land.

    Perhaps he identified the most important person in his life.

    • #2
    • March 14, 2019 at 4:26 pm
    • 10 likes
  3. Thatcher

    Remember, Beto has one thing none of us have, a billionaire father-in-law.

    • #3
    • March 14, 2019 at 5:01 pm
    • 6 likes
  4. Member

    This whole essay is a huge reach. It strikes me as another opportunity for judgmental people to judge and shame. Just because someone is running for office isn’t a license to finger-wag about their choices.

    i don’t care about this guy, or how he distributes his family time. 

    Maybe for some, politics is just an excuse to gossip and shame.

    • #4
    • March 14, 2019 at 5:41 pm
    • 2 likes
  5. Coolidge

    Bethany Mandel: Things don’t have to be fair between men and women,

    I think you are implying that “fair” means “equal”/”the same”. If so, that is not correct. People have different preferences, and thus “fair” is rarely “equal”. For example, female top executives rarely choose a stay-at-home trophy husband. They prefer a guy with ambition and skill and income. But that choice requires a trade-off in sacrificing some career potential. Guys, however, are more likely to be happy with a stay-at-home trophy wife. A wife that is OK with the guy devoting huge energy to the job. Both are fair and choices made through free will, but the outcome as measured solely by career is unlikely to be equal. People are not one-dimensional and it is usually a mistake to compare them solely in one dimension.

    • #5
    • March 14, 2019 at 8:40 pm
    • 4 likes
  6. Coolidge

    Basil Fawlty (View Comment):

    Bethany Mandel:

    So how did Beto come to the decision to run, despite having previously stated his family couldn’t survive a run for the White House? Well, he went on a “find yourself” road trip. Without his family.

    Things don’t have to be fair between men and women, but that doesn’t mean Beto’s commitment to the most important people in his life shouldn’t be questioned by folks considering him for the highest office in the land.

    Perhaps he identified the most important person in his life.

    Basil for the win.

    • #6
    • March 15, 2019 at 3:29 am
    • 5 likes
  7. Coolidge

    What might be nice is that a) we don’t have politicians crafting a story about their lives that would earn them the most votes, regardless of the truth of their lives, and b) Vox didn’t exist.

    That said, I’ll enjoy watching Democrat candidate kick each other in the shins for the next year. I suppose pointing out their hypocrisies will get old, quickly, and we’ll be asked not to compare their failings to Trump’s failings and how they’re not called out on them, but Trump is, etc.

    Because we’re all better than that. Or something.

    The solution isn’t selecting just the right person to fix everything. The solution is to remove the everything. Meaning the ubiquitous overhang of government.

    • #7
    • March 15, 2019 at 3:34 am
    • 3 likes
  8. Member

    Remember, folks. There is nothing you can say that won’t be found offensive. Even something as anodyne as Beto’s nod to his wife. I think I’ll skip this one and wait for him to say something a little more substantive.

    • #8
    • March 15, 2019 at 5:02 am
    • 5 likes
  9. Thatcher

    Bethany Mandel: And yes, this is the biggest strike against the current President in my book. It says a lot about your character how you treat the most important people and commitments in your life.

    Hmmmmm. To me, Trump’s kids seem to be well-adjusted and of sound mind and character. I’d say he’s treated them pretty well despite his busy career and number of failed marriages.

    • #9
    • March 15, 2019 at 6:34 am
    • 5 likes
  10. Member

    Beto O’Rourke revealed a fundamental inequality of American life [from Vox]

    Considering he’s running for President, this is unlikely to be the last time. I thought that this was a feature not a bug for Democrats.

    • #10
    • March 15, 2019 at 6:43 am
    • Like
  11. Member

    Beto O’ Rourke announced his 2020 run for president, saying “we are truly now, more than ever, the last great hope of Earth.”

    (sarc=1) So saith BO, Well, thank the heavens for our savior. (/sarc=0)

    Is there any chance they can provide a candidate that won’t proclaim things like “the moment when the rise of the oceans began to slow and our planet began to heal.” ?

    • #11
    • March 15, 2019 at 7:13 am
    • 2 likes
  12. Member

    Suspira (View Comment):

    Remember, folks. There is nothing you can say that won’t be found offensive. Even something as anodyne as Beto’s nod to his wife. I think I’ll skip this one and wait for him to say something a little more substantive.

    You may be waiting for a long time.

    • #12
    • March 15, 2019 at 7:23 am
    • 2 likes
  13. Member

    Scott Wilmot (View Comment):
    Robert Francis (Beta) O’Rourke is being made out to be the white Obama. He could have gained some credibility – and one-upped Obama – if he had stuck to his guns with what he said in that video. But it turns out he’s just another gutless politician.

    He is very much like Obama: Nice-looking, youngish, polite, inexperienced, self-serving, unqualified, extremely liberal, and, as you point out, gutless.

    • #13
    • March 15, 2019 at 7:24 am
    • 3 likes
  14. Member

    Stad (View Comment):

    Bethany Mandel: And yes, this is the biggest strike against the current President in my book. It says a lot about your character how you treat the most important people and commitments in your life.

    Hmmmmm. To me, Trump’s kids seem to be well-adjusted and of sound mind and character. I’d say he’s treated them pretty well despite his busy career and number of failed marriages.

    I was listening to Scott Adams yesterday. He has some interesting thoughts and insights and sometimes he’s a little slow on some obvious issues. In the latter category, he was talking about a new Rosie O’Donnel book which apparently reveals that she was molested by her father on an ongoing basis. He then said this might be, at least partially, at the root of her Trump hatred, and that bad relationships with ‘daddy’ may be driver behind many women’s hatred and anger toward males and father-figures in general. …Ya think?

    So I’m all for having good relationships with daughters ( and sons) but let’s remember that a lot of this animus is psychological. 

    Beto is low- hanging fruit and it’s unbecoming of pundits on the right to spend time criticizing him or mocking him. I just had to turn off Ben Shapiro for his endless mockery of him, and more importantly his stereotyping of millennials. He’s dripping with contempt. Not a good look if you want to win over young people. 

    • #14
    • March 15, 2019 at 7:33 am
    • 2 likes
  15. Thatcher

    Songwriter (View Comment):
    He is very much like Obama: Nice-looking, youngish, polite, inexperienced, self-serving, unqualified, extremely liberal, and, as you point out, gutless.

    In other words, he’s a serious contender for the Democrat nomination . . .

    • #15
    • March 15, 2019 at 7:38 am
    • 2 likes
  16. Member

    Franco (View Comment):

    Beto is low- hanging fruit and it’s unbecoming of pundits on the right to spend time criticizing him or mocking him. 

    In short, Occasio-Cortez 2. It’s the way of political “discourse” today. One wonders if the pundits realize that turning people into household names is not the way to minimize their influence.

     

    • #16
    • March 15, 2019 at 7:58 am
    • 2 likes
  17. Thatcher

    Franco (View Comment):
    I just had to turn off Ben Shapiro for his endless mockery of him, and more importantly his stereotyping of millennials. He’s dripping with contempt.

    You say this like it is a bad thing.

    • #17
    • March 15, 2019 at 8:04 am
    • 3 likes
  18. Thatcher

    Stad (View Comment):

    Songwriter (View Comment):
    He is very much like Obama: Nice-looking, youngish, polite, inexperienced, self-serving, unqualified, extremely liberal, and, as you point out, gutless.

    In other words, he’s a serious contender for the Democrat nomination . . .

    Nah, he is too white. No wait…

    • #18
    • March 15, 2019 at 8:05 am
    • Like
  19. Member

    Hoyacon (View Comment):

    Franco (View Comment):

    Beto is low- hanging fruit and it’s unbecoming of pundits on the right to spend time criticizing him or mocking him.

    In short, Occasio-Cortez 2. It’s the way of political “discourse” today. One wonders if the pundits realize that turning people into household names is not the way to minimize their influence.

    I’m beginning to think elevating these radicals are very useful to the moderate wing of the GOP. It’s a weird symbiotic relationship whereby the farther left the other side drifts, the more important their brand of middle-of-the-road globalist centrism becomes.

    All they have to do is present themselves as non-leftists. They can then still appease the left to stay in power, all the while appearing to be “on the right” by comparison.

     

    • #19
    • March 15, 2019 at 8:09 am
    • Like
  20. Member

    Franco (View Comment):

    Beto is low- hanging fruit and it’s unbecoming of pundits on the right to spend time criticizing him or mocking him. I just had to turn off Ben Shapiro for his endless mockery of him, and more importantly his stereotyping of millennials. He’s dripping with contempt. Not a good look if you want to win over young people.

    I think that’s a little harsh on Ben Shapiro. He makes logical and polite arguments as well mocking comedy. He serves both vegetable so-bad-for-you it’s wonderful desert. 

    • #20
    • March 15, 2019 at 11:08 am
    • 1 like
  21. Coolidge

    A lefty hoisted on his own petard?

     Oh say it ain’t so! Why Lefties are our moral superiors don’t ya know?

    Beto may not be low hanging fruit in the end – or look at it another way, which of announced Pres candidates so far isn’t?

    The fact of the matter is, to echo Suspira, the Left has set unrealistic and almost un-doable standards of behavior in a relationship which upon close examination, almost all the Dem Candidates will violate in one way or another.

    Understanding that lends me in the direction that the Dem Nominee will be black and a woman, because whomever gets the nod will need a double “get our of jail free” – no criticism allowed – card of being Black and a Woman to shield themselves from the inevitably harsh criticisms the white males will get and have to explain away somehow.

    • #21
    • March 15, 2019 at 1:39 pm
    • Like
  22. Member

    unsk2 (View Comment):

    Understanding that lends me in the direction that the Dem Nominee will be black and a woman, because whomever gets the nod will need a double “get our of jail free” – no criticism allowed – card of being Black and a Woman to shield themselves from the inevitably harsh criticisms the white males will get and have to explain away somehow.

    So, Kamala?

    • #22
    • March 16, 2019 at 5:24 am
    • Like
  23. Member

    Henry Castaigne (View Comment):

    Franco (View Comment):

    Beto is low- hanging fruit and it’s unbecoming of pundits on the right to spend time criticizing him or mocking him. I just had to turn off Ben Shapiro for his endless mockery of him, and more importantly his stereotyping of millennials. He’s dripping with contempt. Not a good look if you want to win over young people.

    I think that’s a little harsh on Ben Shapiro. He makes logical and polite arguments as well mocking comedy. He serves both vegetable so-bad-for-you it’s wonderful desert.

    Sorry but I can’t take the guy. I try, but I keep getting put off. He’s a little too young to be so sure of his opinions, for one thing, and he’s flirting with being a kind of Bill Kristol pundit who must force his utopian conservative abstractions into the world of politics. I’m getting really tired of these ‘balls and strikes’ guys who want to impress us on their nuanced opinions on how the world should be.

    As much as he seems to think Trump is an arrogant blowhard, Shapiro is by no means a humble guy. He has a very high opinion of himself and he spends a lot of effort mocking others ( much more than Trump does) – and it’s not funny because there’s so much contempt behind it. 

    His podcasts are full of over-long commercials where he himself reads the copy sounding like a fast-talking huckster, it becomes difficult to determine when he’s opining and when he’s selling. The machine-gun verbiage also becomes tiresome. 

    But his stereotyping of his enemies, in this case the ‘stoner surfer, California dude’ character is just too over-the-top. And it’s so easy.

    A guy with his intelligence and ability should focus more on the threats to our freedom coming from renegade alphabet agencies. That’s complicated and difficult. 

    Conservatism will go nowhere with his approach IMO. 

    In ten years he might be tolerable.

     

     

    • #23
    • March 16, 2019 at 6:34 am
    • 2 likes