Learning from Mother’s Day

Looking back over the past year, I see that we’ve still got a lot of progress to make.  It’s only been about five millennia of “civilization,” but we still haven’t figured our that women are just as important as men.  Probably more.  This Mother’s Day we stop to think of our moms and many of us wish we were closer to home so that being there this day were possible.  Even the spineless men who degrade women are probably on the phone to their moms today, or maybe sending flowers.  The real truth emerges tomorrow.  Did we learn the lesson?  Are women to be accorded the same rights as men?  And who, really, has the right to decide who’s more human than anyone else?

Born as human beings, we need our mothers to survive.  They nurture and comfort and provide for us, even if fathers step out of the picture.  I’m reminded of an experiment that I learned about in some science class along the way.  A baby monkey (I can’t recall the species) was given a choice of two artificial “mothers.”  One, made of wire, monkey shaped, had a bottle where the baby could feed.  The other had no bottle, but was covered in fur.  The picture of that poor monkey clinging to the bottle-less but “comforting” fur-covered mother has haunted me ever since.  The look of desperation on its face makes me want to weep.  Why can’t we treat all people equitably?  We require no experiments to reveal the truth here. I look forward to the day when such messages will no longer be needed.

Too often we allow our holidays to assuage our guilt over poor treatment for the rest of the year.  Churches used to be plagued with those living sinful lives making it to Sunday’s absolution only to start it all over again.  If only we would learn the lessons Mother’s Day has to teach us.  People depend on one another to survive.  We like to think of ourselves as independent and not requiring help from anyone.  That’s a lie on a Trumpian scale.  We need each other.  Every live deserves fair treatment.  The same wage for the same work.  The right to protect their bodies and their health.  The right to show us a better way of being in the world.  It’s Mother’s Day, and if you’re reading this you have a mother to thank for this very modest possibility.  When a new sun arises tomorrow, let’s remember what we learned today.  Thank you, Mom!

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