Friday, December 5, 2008

Family is what works for you, not some stupid ideal.

This story on Live Science reminds me of a discussion I had a few years ago with a friend of mine.

This friend is the same one who goes with the political winds. At the time, he was a Bush supporter and was advocating for the "traditional family" as promoted by the religious right.

His argument was that it's better for a child to have both a mother and father in the family unit. He noted that children are much better off that way.

Of course, I objected saying that was bullshit because a child just needed at least one loving parent and the particular shape of the family was immaterial.

He kept to his guns. I pointed out that I grew up in a single parent household and for the right to impugn my single parent upbringing was rather insulting. I, for one, don't see myself as deficient or a scourge to society because my father wasn't around.

He tried to demur, but it was too late to remove that foot from his mouth.

All this points to the utter stupidity of imposing ideals onto people. People rarely meet ideals, but that's what makes us so interesting---we don't fit into neat little conceptual boxes.

Idealized concepts are like cotton candy: Their cool to look at, but they are too much when you get into it.

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