Hello, Muddah. Welcome Back, Parent #…?

Alright everybody, cool your jets, and that includes myself, but I’ll see what I can do to find something to gripe about anyway, you know me. I was all set to jump ugly about the State Department’s decision to replace the terms “mother” and “father” on U.S. passport applications with the more gender neutral “parent 1” and “parent 2”. The changes, or rather the “improvements” were being made to more accurately describe “a child’s parents, in recognition of different types of families.” Oh, brother…really?

Now, here’s some reasoning I don’t quite understand. Jennifer Chrisler, executive director of Family Equality Council says the change allows different types of families to apply for passports for their child without feeling like the government doesn’t recognize their family. Excuse me, but is this the same thoughtful government that refuses to grant the equality of marriage to same-sex couples because that would ruin the sanctity of the family unit and now it’s worried how families address themselves?

Enter Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, who ordered that “mother” and “father” remain on the passport application forms. The forms will now read “mother or parent” and “father or parent” which, if you ask me, is stupidly redundant or possibly “mother or parent 1” and “father or parent 2”, which, if you ask me, is stupidly assenting.

So, while I was glad to read that mother and father would be maintained, I still couldn’t help but think that if they needed a change to reflect the times, why couldn’t they just decide to simply have a line on the form that asks for the parents’ names whether male/female, male/male or female/female without being so alienating as who was number 1 and who was number 2? Who would make that decision and how insulting would it be to parent number two when he or she might have felt like a shoe in for that coveted number 1 spot?

And whatever happened to parent or guardian like we used to have on permission slips to go on a field trip in school? See? I still found a way to gripe!



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