Romney, Santorum and archaic ideas on fertility
By Lisa Miller, Published: March 2
Between them, Mitt Romney and Rick Santorum have as many children — 12 — as there were tribes of Israel. Ron Paul has five of his own, and in an early debate, perhaps unwilling to be outdone by Michele Bachmann’s fostering of dozens, Paul boasted that when he worked as a physician he delivered “4,000 babies.”
There’s nothing wrong with big families, of course. But the smug fecundity of the Republican field this primary season has me worried. Their family photos, with members of their respective broods spilling out to the margins, seem to convey a subliminal message that goes far beyond a father’s pride in being able to field his own basketball team. What the Republican front-runners seem to be saying is this: We are like the biblical patriarchs. As conservative religious believers, we take seriously the biblical injunction to be fruitful and multiply.
... (The appeal of Sarah Palin to so many Christian women was exactly this: She prioritized her fertility while juggling a big job and a husband who was frequently out of town. Her fans call her a Proverbs 31 woman, a reference to the biblical character who does it all — and who keeps herself looking good. Her price, the Bible says, is “above rubies.”)
I think this is a pretty common feeling. Much of what drives political passions in the U.S. are different kinds of white women trying to put each other down.
What's interesting is the almost complete kibosh in public discourse over more substantive fertility-related matters.
For example, if I type into Google
here's what I get as the first hit:
HISPANIC FERTILITY IN U.S. FOUND ABOVE NORM - NYTimes.comwww.nytimes.com/.../hispanic-fertility-in-us-found-above-norm.html
Dec 18, 1984 – Fertility among Hispanic women in the United States is nearly 50 ...''The fertility rate for women of Hispanic origin was 97.5 live births per 1000 ...