Current events has increasingly become a favorite STFU, Parents category to tackle, not only because the news is always relevant, but because I’m so amused by the ways people choose to discuss the news on social media. Parents in particular have a knack for posting borderline inane status updates when gun violence occurs, 9/11 is remembered, or marathon bombings uproot a whole city.
This time around, the government shutdown has inspired a few “classic” parent responses to what is essentially a huge national crisis with international ramifications (that will hopefully get resolved soon). Whether a parent is downplaying the seriousness of the shutdown, ranting nonsensically, or trotting out the old chestnut about moms never getting a day off, each of today’s examples typify how NOT to talk about the government shutdown on Facebook (unless you want your friends to roll their eyes, take a screenshot, and send that screenshot straight to STFU, Parents).
1. Who Run The World? Girls Moms
Okay, the members of Congress who have effectively shut down the government are acting like a “bunch of babies,” yeah. That would be one way of putting it, if you want to sound like a simpleton mama who likens the federal government shutting down to babies who don’t get their own way or kindergarteners who don’t like to share. You could phrase it like that, if you’re the type who says things like, “Sucking it up and loving every minute of it!!!” with a goofy smile on your face as you fold teeny, tiny articles of clothing and pack school lunches. But to me, it’s a little ridiculous that every time something economically crippling happens in this country, the first thing parents do is yap about comparisons that make no sense.
Yes, it’s true that parenthood is not (or shouldn’t be) a job one can just up and quit, but it’s not, say, the same as a job that involves running the country in order to keep the economy chugging along and allowing people to use state parks they’ve paid for or attending jobs they work to make a living. No one who makes this “mommy/Congress” comparison ever sounds like the shutdown has personally affected them, and that’s what rubs me the wrong way. If it did (and eventually it would, if no negotiations were ever made), I’m guessing these “puddles and crock pots” updates wouldn’t exist.
2. Shutdown Smash Cake Celebration
Answer: Hahahahahaha NOPE. Smash cakes for everyone! It helps release the anger, you see. Anger toward the government, and anger toward people like Elisa for saying stupid shit like this on social media.
3. Mom Is A Never-Ending Job
While I think it’s awesome that Julia’s 3-year-old “runs away from men in suits” (we have something in common!), I get a little tired of the “My baby is my boss” analogy. Is your baby the boss or are you the boss? I don’t want anyone to think a toddler is the boss of me, but that’s just one difference between me and Julia. That and the fact that I would never casually comment on a friend’s status update to say, “Are you off today if so have a beer for me. Mom is a never ending job”. For one thing, it shows that Julia isn’t close enough with Colin to know that he’s self-employed, and for another, it’s just a sanctimonious thing to say. Breathing, eating, having shelter, and paying bills are “never-ending jobs,” too, but somehow we all manage to do it. I even manage to use punctuation in my Facebook comments! It’s a never-ending job, but someone’s got to do it.
4. Woe Is (Clueless) Mom
According to the submitter, Annalee’s homeschooled daughter Rose is 13, and according to me, Annalee is a total fucking moron. (Sorry, Annalee, but if you’re reading this, you are a moron.) Aside from her assessment of the shutdown being factually incorrect, she’s pinning the shutdown on her child not being able to complete her studies. But any good teacher knows that sometimes, shit happens — the copy machine breaks and the test is rescheduled; the cafeteria kitchen has a small fire and kids eat in their classrooms; the A/C goes out and kids learn in the heat — and you just have to make do with what you’ve got. Does Rose read books? I’m guessing she does. Just because the government has shut down doesn’t mean education has to, as well. And who knows? The Affordable Health Care Act might help allow for Rose’s future child to remain healthy enough to receive an education, too. You never know what’s possible when a nation is equipped with universal health coverage. Well, okay, we do know, but to people like Annalee, that would just be socialism.
5. Ignorance Is Bliss Stupid
What can I say? I’m not surprised that Stefan is friends with Xandi — a person who believes that the right to affordable health care is socialist bullshit, and that the answer to all of our problems is buying a cabin in the woods and sitting cross-legged on a bear skin rug surrounded by armaments and ammunition. But it still saddens me to read such drivel during a shutdown that impacts us all and, perhaps more importantly, symbolizes the state of the U.S. government and its place in international politics. I’ve seen several examples of this “What did I miss?” attitude, in response to Osama bin Laden’s death, Gaddafi’s death, and an anomalous earthquake, and it’s just mind-boggling. If Stefan has access to Facebook, doesn’t he also have access to Google? Maybe when he’s done keeping another human being alive (a job we all know is never done), he can take a minute to catch up on the most widely reported story of the week. Once he’s finished scrolling through his newsfeed, obvs.