The Parliamentary Task Force on child Care is presently holding hearings across Canada. It should be a forgone conclusion that it will recommend universal Day Care centers across our nation, but first the charade of public hearings must end.
Of the Seven parliamentarians sitting on this special committee, only one has three children. (2.1 children per family are required to replace Canada’s aging population without depending upon immigration.) Indeed, two of the women on the task force have no children at all and are actively involved with the Status of Women Council. Would the addition of at least one parent with four or more children not be helpful? After all, who has the expertise in child care?
The answer, of course, is that this parliamentary committee is not about child care at all. It is about finding the best way to dump kids to further careers. As everyone should know, the Status of Women’s Councils and feminists do not speak for children. These women speak only for themselves. Their idea of status is obtaining equality with men in the work place and this has nothing to do with what is best for children.
Equating status with power, feminists have long recognized the fact that it is not men that oppress them- it is children. It is children that frustrate their ambition in the work place and, like it or not, the care and emotional involvement of child-rearing still falls primarily on mothers. It is difficult, if not impossible to become president of a bank and still remain the primary person responsible for parenting.
The right to destroy their pre-born child through legalized abortion then, becomes an absolute necessity, and for those that do not wish to sacrifice career and still own a child, government-funded universal day care is their panacea.
Undoubtedly, government-funded women’s group after government-funded women’s’ group will all be parroting the same line- universal day care will free us! After all, it is because they share government philosophy that they are funded in the first place. Only they will have the public funding to employ “experts” to expound upon the virtue of professionally-run day care centres over the care by mothers who, they imply, have nothing to give but love.
Notably absent will be most organizations that could speak for the homemaker. Her priorities are first her family, second her church, and a possible third, a full-or part-time job. This job, however, is not for her own self esteem, but to increase family income. Politics and parliamentary committees are near the bottom in her priorities. The auxiliaries of churches simply lack the resources and aggressiveness to compete head on with government-funded feminists.
If government concern is truly the child, it would ensure that any amount spent for children go to all parents- not simply to parents whose self esteem is wrapped up in their careers. Increased Child Tax Credits could ensure that the benefit of additional government expenditures be passed on to all lower income families. Alternatively, an increase in Family Allowances could ensure that all families shared at all income levels. Parents could then decide how to best spend the Child Care Allowance, whether it be to pay for the cost of day care, to pay grandparents or other extended members of the family or friends, or to use it in the old fashioned way, by simply relieving the existing financial burden so that one parent could remain at home and raise their children.
Universal day care is simply another government programme that will ultimately add to the tax burden and poverty of those families who would prefer to raise their own children without being pushed into the Day Care mould. For the Latter families, there is nothing universal about universal day care.
Thomas A.Schuck is a Weyburn lawyer and vice-president of the Saskatchewan Pro-Life Association.