Many of us have fond memories of the 1990s. Partially because we were younger, but also because things did seem a least a little less bonkers back then. Rush Limbaugh seemed super fringe, and the most important causes in many of our lives were freeing Tibet and also Mumia. Oh! And Leonard Peltier. Can you even remember the last time you had a spare minute to even contemplate freeing Tibet? It had to have been sometime before the Iraq War. SORRY LAMAS AND ALSO RICHARD GERE, WHEREVER YOU ARE.

But! At the same time, there were still a bunch of wacky conservatives, who -- by today's standards -- seem even wackier than they did back then. And one of those conservatives was Mike Pence, Donald Trump's shiny new running mate. One of their big causes, as you may recall, was how terrible working mothers and single mothers were. For real, Dan Quayle thought Murphy Brown having a kid on TV and not being married was going to bring about the very downfall of society as we knew it. And maybe it did, in a way -- but that society kinda sucked anyway.

In 1997, Mike Pence wrote a letter to the editor in the Indianapolis Star (ie: a ye olde internet comment) about how day-care will make your kids love you less, and also about how if you don't wanna keep the ladies home, barefoot and pregnant, you probably think mothers don't even matter!

Researchers for the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development recently announced the results of a three-year study of over 1,300 day-care kids.

While The Indianapolis Star chose to headline the April 4 story with “No cognitive disadvantage for day-care kids, study shows,” the real news was in the area of emotional development.

Researchers found that while day-care kids suffer no disadvantage in cognitive or linguistic development, their emotional development was stunted. Specifically, researchers found that a child cared for by others was less affectionate toward his mother.

This was described as “statistically insignificant,” which means that the numbers make it as obvious as the nose on your face.

No doubt, many will recite the mantra of the ‘90s in response, namely “So what?”

Well, this evidence suggests for the first time that day-care does not equal at-home care.

For years, we have gotten the message from the mouthpieces of the popular culture that you can have it all, career, kids and a two car garage. The numbers in this federally funded study argue that the converse is true.

Sure, you can have it all, but your day-care kids get the short end of the emotional stick.

So am I condemning anyone who has chosen the day-care route? Absolutely not. I am criticizing a culture that has sold the big lie that “Mom doesn’t matter.” These statistics should ignite a national debate about the family and precisely who should be raising the next generation of Americans.

We should seriously rethink a tax code that makes it less and less possible for one parent to stay home with the kids, and replace it with a family friendly system of tax collection.

Or we could just settle for another generation of adults with good language and cognitive skills but stunted emotional growth. Let’s take these findings and put families first again.

The grand irony here is that it's been Republican tax plans and policies that have made it so everyone makes less money and can't support a family on a single income! The whole "if we keep giving them tax cuts, all that wealth will just trickle down!" thing just didn't work as well as the "Hey, if you make a ridiculous amount of money we're gonna tax you at 90 percent anyway, so you might as well pay your workers more because you're not keeping that money either way" thing. Funny how that works.

Anyway, I'm pretty sure that no one was marching down the street in the '90s yelling "Mom's Don't Matter" (again, too busy freeing Tibet). That wasn't a thing, for anyone. Just as, surely, Mike Pence doesn't think that Dads don't matter even though he was cool with them having jobs. In fact, I'm pretty sure he had a job while his kids were growing up. Why didn't he stay home? HMMMM?

Of course, as CNN points out, Trump himself has shared similar views in the past, and partially blamed his divorce with Ivana on the fact that she started working back in 1994:

"I think that putting a wife to work is a very dangerous thing. If you're in business for yourself, I really think it's a bad idea. I think that was the single greatest cause of what happened to my marriage with Ivana," Trump said, discussing his divorce with his first wife.

He said that he disliked hearing her "shouting on the phone" during contentious business deals.

"A softness disappeared. There was a great softness to Ivana, and she still has that softness, but during this period of time she became an executive, not a wife," Trump said.

Also he said some bullshit about how you wouldn't see him pushing a stroller, because what was he, a cuck?


Robyn Pennacchia

Robyn Pennacchia is a brilliant, fabulously talented and visually stunning angel of a human being, who shrugged off what she is pretty sure would have been a Tony Award-winning career in musical theater in order to write about stuff on the internet. Follow her on Twitter at @RobynElyse


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