A recent editorial in the New York Sun compelled me to write the following Letter to the Editor. Whether or not it gets published therein, you have the opportunity to read it here. I hope that you’ll comment.
I don’t often read the opinion pages of the newspaper, but yesterday found myself sitting on a train with only the previous day’s New York Sun in my bag. I had already pretty much read it, so I now turned to the Editorial section. I began to read the top comment, “Palin’s Pregnancy.”
“There seems to be a view that teenage births are somehow a bad thing. But it seems to us that it’s not the births that are the problem. It’s the environment that marginalizes teen motherhood, encourages our youth to delay marriage, provides too few incentives for family-building…”
As this text appeared to be quoted from elsewhere, and I had not yet looked to the attribution, I began to believe this was a spoof. I continued reading.
“…We’re happy to have women and men decide for themselves when to have children.”
At this point, I became angry. I looked down to the attribution, saw that it was from a previous editorial, but still didn’t quite understand. So I continued to read. I must say that it was not so much that it was difficult to finish it as it was difficult to finish it without hitting the emergency stop switch on the train!
I find the sentiments expressed in this editorial to be dangerous and other-worldly. So much so, in fact, that if ever there were to be a defining moment in my identity as a Democrat, this would be it. If you truly believe in your heart of hearts that the solution to the problems in our society today is to keep our women poor, pregnant and stupid, then there is no argument I could possibly make to counter that. It’s clear that you’re from a different world or a different dimension of my own. Marginalizes teen motherhood? Provides too few incentives for family building? Decide for themselves when to have children?
Folks, these kids are children. They’re 17. What’s wrong with having babies at age 17? They (the parents) are supposed to be in high school. They have homework to do. They have football games to go to. They have slumber parties to go to. They have forensics clubs, chess clubs, track meets, band concerts, chemistry labs, lockers and lousy lunches to deal with. This is where they’re at, and where they’re supposed to be. What on earth can you possibly be thinking to suggest that it is ok to take these kids out of this environment and make them parents, and then to decry society for not providing more incentives and job opportunities for them?
I find your editorial position to be astounding, incomprehensible, and abhorrent. If this truly echoes the position of the Republican party, then may God help us if the Republicans win again in November.