Brown says this:
But it is fascinating to me that that is the quality being highlighted here as so perfect. C'mon. Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff is married with two grown children. His predecessor, Tom Ridge, had a family. Anybody remember a debate about whether they would have trouble balancing the demands of work and family?
Now, I am a fan of Gov. Rendell. He has been on this show many times. I like him for his candor. In our attempts to cut through the bull, he delivers far less bull than most politicians. But it is his frankness here that raises so many questions.
2. As a woman, hearing this, it is hard not to wonder if we are counted out for certain jobs, certain opportunities, because we do have a family or because we are in our child-bearing years. Are we? It is a fair question.
3. If you are a childless, single woman with suspicions that you get stuck working holidays, weekends and the more burdensome shifts more often than your colleagues with families, are those suspicions well-founded? Probably so. Is there an assumption that if you're family-free then you have no life? By some, yes.
Again Gov. Rendell, I don't mean to rake you over the coals. I know what you meant to say. But your comments do perpetuate stereotypes that put us in boxes, both mothers and single women.
In government and beyond, men have been given the benefit of the doubt when it comes to striking the right work-life balance. Women are owed the same consideration.
Right on the money. I've really appreciated Brown's commentary over the past few months... it's been a long time since I've enjoyed someone in the mainstream media, and Brown offers us a supportive voice.