The outrage over the unemployed mother of six, who somehow caused herself to get pregnant with eight more babies (please excuse my lack of detail on this case–I’m determined not to read anything about it) is sort of amusing to me. Certainly the notion that a woman who is a ward of the state, along with her six children, should choose to have eight more babies, is beyond absurd. The notoriety has made the woman a great celebrity, with a book deal and a made-for-TV movie in the works, no doubt. She even caused a new word to be coined–“Octomom.” And the American public, oblivious to the economic pillaging to which we are subjected daily, is boiling in indignation. Why? Because this woman was so irresponsible that she has brought 14 kids in the world, with no ability to provide for them, and expecting the US public to assume the cost of supporting them. There has even been legislation introduced in several states to prohibit fertilization clinics from assisting women in getting pregnant, if the women lack the ability to provide for the children.
Well I suppose that’s a perfectly understandable reason to be mad. But what makes it all amusing to me, in a sad way, is that there are MILLIONS of children born under those circumstances every year in this country, although admittedly in more conventional and less dramatic ways.
Between 15-20 percent of all the children in this country live in poverty. Millions are beneficiaries of TANF (commonly known as “welfare”). The vast majority of these children are born to single mothers, a substantial majority of which will give birth to multiple welfare babies. And there will be no book deals or movies for them. They won’t make the talk shows. No new words will be created to describe them. No laws are going to be passed designed to prevent them from getting pregnant.
But the behavior of millions of them is just as irresponsible as that of the now famous Octomom.
Maybe our society should give as much attention to them, and their innocent children, as we do to Ms. Octomom.