I don't know much about British politics, or about the two contenders to succeed Prime Minister David Cameron as leader of the Conservative Party, except that both are women in their 50s. I suppose it was (sadly) inevitable, then, that the motherhood question would come up.
Last week, I saw an interview with Theresa May, which lasered in on the fact that she does not have children (apparently not by choice).
Then tonight, headlines started popping up in my newsfeed that the other contender, Andrea Leadsom, gave an interview suggesting that she would make a better leader than May because she has children, and therefore has a stake in the future of the country.
I was reminded of similar kerfuffle in Canadian (Alberta provincial) politics a couple of years ago, which I blogged about here. In this case, it was an underling who made some nasty comments; both of the then-leaders involved handled themselves with dignity (thank goodness!!).
It seems ludicrous to me to imply that mothers (or fathers, for that matter) are somehow better qualified for roles in public life, simply because they are parents. Of course, mothers who enter politics also get harangued by the press about whether their husbands support their ambitions and how they will juggle the demands of both work and parenting. (You don't generally see men being asked the same kinds of questions, do you?) Either way, it seems, women in politics are screwed. :( No wonder people are reluctant to run for public office...