Saturday, May 12, 2007

Ovaries Trump Ideas In Matters of War & Peace

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi apparently is extra qualified to bring an end to the war in Iraq because she is a mother AND a grandmother too.
There are numerous reasons to end this war - the cost of lives and limbs, the cost in dollars, the cost to our reputation in the world, the cost to our military and National Guard - but it is as a mother, that I am most committed to ending this war, because war hits mothers in an especially painful and personal way. We cannot help but think of our fellow mothers as their young sons and daughters are sent off to war in Iraq - praying for their child's safety, anxiously awaiting a call, an e-mail, a letter - anything. The relief as their children return, or the utter devastation when their children never come home. We think too of the Iraqi mothers, who have lost their children, and whose children are growing up surrounded by warfare and destruction.

Women have always been the peacekeepers of our societies. When I became the first woman Speaker of the House this year, I was honored to assume this position and humbled by the responsibility it brought.

I am typically a fan of the speaker, I used to live right next door to her district when in school in San Francisco, and listened enthusiastically and often to her speak, but this is a pet peeve of mine.

Ovaries don't give you a trump card on issues. Fertilized ovaries don't either. Margaret Thatcher didn't let childbirth prevent her from being a warmongering pain in the ass. Gandhi didn't deliver by c-section, but he still thought that peace was a good idea.

If we are talking in generalities, sure I can go with the notion that women are more compassionate, more interested in peace, and dialog and compromise. I don't like it when it is assumed as a given. Ann Coulter does not get to speak for my concerns about world wide conflicts if she ever finds herself a mate with frisky sperm.

The war should be stopped with the support, leadership and wisdom of men, women, the young and the old. Do I not care about those who die in combat just because I am a father? It would be nice if we got beyond the point of gender identity politics and keep electing fine citizens like Speaker Pelosi because of their ideas and their leadership without making it all about chromosonal authority.