Friday, February 02, 2007

Australian Political Candidate Touts Childfree Status as Asset

Kids 'a hindrance to being PM'
Labour Party deputy leader Julia Gillard has sparked a national debate on the kids-or-career issue by presenting her childlessness as an asset in her quest to become Australia's first female prime minister.

Political aspirants everywhere have traditionally presented themselves to their electorates as 'normal' people.

Wives and husbands, daughters and sons, even pets, have been trotted out as tokens of the ordinariness that makes for acceptability with voters.

But Gillard, 46, has turned the convention on its head. She says that, for women but not men, children are a hindrance and a distraction from the biggest prizes in politics.
. . .
Some have noted that New Zealand Prime Minister Helen Clark is childless - as are German Chancellor Angela Merkel and United States secretary of state Condoleezza Rice.

Noted social commentator Bettina Arndt commended Gillard for her honesty, saying that "women with political ambitions may be far better off putting these on hold until their breeding days are over".
. . .
"Julia Gillard's remarks are ludicrous," Kate Beaumont wrote to her local paper, noting that when a woman was old enough to try for the prime ministership her child-rearing days would be over.

Technorati Tag:

No comments: