During a very productive hearing on COVID-19 school closures (wait, did I say “hearing”?—I meant “harangue”), Georgia Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene confronted American Federation of Teachers President Randi Weingarten over the trials and tribulations of parenthood—something Greene was certain Weingarten couldn’t understand, because Weingarten’s kids are adopted.
So in this corner, we’ve got Greene—the repellent rep, the barmy bigot spigot, the infamous Flaxen Klaxon—and frankly, it doesn’t matter who’s in the other corner. They win. Pretty much by default. It's the one metaphysical certitude we can all hang our epistemologically skimpy tinfoil hats on.
It would actually be marginally less unnerving if plagues of locusts flew out this woman’s head whenever she opened her mouth instead of whatever the heckfire this is.
Yeah, I know. Roll the clip.
REP. MARJORIE TAYLOR GREENE: “Are you a mother?”
RANDI WEINGARTEN: “I am a mother by marriage.”
GREENE: “By marriage, I see.”
WEINGARTEN: “And my wife is here with me, so, I’m really glad that she’s here.”
GREENE: “As not a medical doctor, not a biological mother ...”
Greene went on to say Weingarten wasn’t really a teacher, either—just a political activist.
Then she turned her bigotry up to 11.
GREENE: “Let me tell you, I am a mother, and all three of my children were directly affected by the school closures, by the recommendations, which is something you really can’t understand.”
Well, I hate to say this, but for once Greene has a point. Her children had the worst pandemic of anyone in America who didn’t literally have a breathing tube forced down their throats. They had to stay home with her.
Not everyone was keen on MTG’s bigoted B.S. Democratic Rep. Robert Garcia decided he needed to step up immediately and rebuke this bleached wail.
GARCIA: “I just want to note that the decorum of the attacks on the witness were unacceptable that the gentlelady from Georgia just did, and so it would be nice if we didn’t attack the witnesses, particularly … any decision about whether or not she’s a mother—you are a mother. Thank you for being a great parent.”
If adoptive parents aren’t real parents, it stands to reason that America’s estimated 5 million adoptees never had real parents. Yeah, Greene should tell them that to their faces and see how that goes over. That said, MTG really needs to up her game—usually she alienates even larger voting cohorts with her serial inanities.
And this isn’t even the first time Marge has waded into this particular hog-manure lagoon. She’s been saying for some time that LGBTQ+ parents are somehow less real than Jan. 6 antifa agitators and rampaging Jewish space lasers.
In fact, in July 2022, she went so far as to call nonbiological parents a “danger” to kids.
GREENE: “So let’s talk about children. Children are in the greatest danger in America today because traditional family values are being destroyed. The idea that Mom and Dad together—not fake Mom and fake Dad, but biological Mom and biological Dad—can raise their children together and do what’s right for their children, raising them to be confident in who they are, their identity. Their identity is they’re a child made by God.”
I’m glad she mentioned God, because the most celebrated adoptive parent in history is St. Joseph, who is said to have adopted Jesus after finding out that his betrothed, Mary, was miraculously impregnated by Zeus or whatever. (Sorry, it’s been awhile since I read my Bible.) Though somehow I doubt there was much “you’re not my real dad!” sass talk happening in uptown Nazareth. But hey, Marge ignores what’s actually in the Bible pretty much every day—why not do it when it comes to parents, too?
And as Newsweek noted at the time—weeks after the fall of Roe—Greene was also undermining the anti-choice refrain of “just carry the baby to term and it will get adopted, no need for abortion rights!”
Her remarks come as abortion-rights are being rolled back in large swaths of the country, with many Republicans pointing to adoption as an alternative for women who would otherwise seek an abortion.
Across the United States, there are millions of people who have either been adopted or adopted a child. Each year, about 135,000 children are adopted in the U.S., according to the Adoption Network. In 2020, roughly 632,000 children spent at least some time in foster care, according to data from the Department of Health and Human Services.
Adoption has emerged as a hotly debated topic as the future of reproductive rights is debated. Even though anti-abortion advocates suggest it's an alternative for women who do not wish to keep their child, others argue it is not always a viable option due to the high cost of childbirth and that many children already go unadopted.
Hillary Clinton was right when she said it takes a village. Plenty of biological parents are all but useless in that role, and plenty of nonbiological parents provide more love and support to the children in their lives than any “parent” ever has.
Chosen family is family, in other words.
In fact, the ideal of the traditional nuclear family has always been something of a myth. And whether you accept that premise or not, adoption has long been a part of the so-called “nuclear family.” Or maybe MTG wants to turn all those unfortunate orphans into motherless Dickensian street urchins. Seems to be the direction the GOP is going in anyway, right?
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