14 March 2012

Glenn Grothman: turning America into an Idiocracy one new law at a time.

It's been a noisy week of Grothman-powered news this week, largely because as soon as things start to swing back to simple accounting procedures, Senator Grothman decides to say something crazy.  Again.

People always wonder whether Glenn actually means any of this wicked nonsense.  I think this is the wrong question.  I'm coming around to the working hypothesis that it doesn't matter -- that he doesn't say any of it because he believes or doesn't believe it.  I'm starting to suspect the sole intent is to be inflammatory, without any particular end except confusion and disbelief, and to eat up news cycles.

So, a round up from the past week or so.

Hello mother? It's me Norman I mean Glenn. I've just come home from the State Capitol mother. I did just what you told me to do...

Remember when satire was funny because it merely exaggerated people and events?  Nowadays it's funny because it doesn't.

State Sen. Glenn Grothman (R-WI), is receiving a well-deserved chanclaso for sponsoring legislation that paints single moms as child abusers. Grothman argues that single women are intentionally getting pregnant so they can receive welfare to support their poor choices, despite research that shows most of these pregnancies are unplanned. And far from keeping his ridiculous views to himself, he wants to legislatively stigmatize these women by citing their predicament as a contributing factor to child abuse. There's actually a reasonable solution to decreasing the number of unwanted pregnancies in Wisconsin.  Instead of trying to slander single mothers as child abusers, the state legislature can make birth control more readily available. Or better yet, the Wisconsin state legislature can require public schools to offer a comprehensive sex education class based on facts and science focusing on the importance of using protection and the effectiveness of birth control. So Sen. Grothman, fuera with your antiquated views on single mothers. They have no place in the state legislature.  

  • Here's a comment from Divided We Stand which noted that an environmentally responsible mining bill might have been just the thing for the economy Up Nort'.  Instead of hammering out something useful, however, our single, Family Oriented, Senator decided that inflaming the civic discourse was more important.
So instead of burning the midnight oil on something exceedingly powerful like salvaging the mining bill Grothman spends his time on nonessential legislation that amounts to nothing more than red meat for the far right. My sense is that for this Senator provocation over accomplishment should be the order of business.

Odd sense of priorities don’t you think?

I spent a good part of my life raising a daughter by myself without the benefit of marriage so I submit to you that I know more about this subject than the officious senator. I guess that my former circumstances make me guilty of child neglect as well.

But I doubt Grothman has the courage to say that to my face.
Believe me Tom, if he did he'd still never make eye contact.

  • And finally this nice little compendium from Foolocracy: where they elected Glenn "Fool of the Week" for somewhat oversimplifying (i.e. ignoring) the difference between correlation and causation in the relation between single parent families and child abuse.

Wisconsin State Senator Glenn Grothman is concerned about child abuse and neglect. He sits on a state committee that makes recommendations on how to handle the problem. The problem for Grothman is that he sees the problem in simplistic terms. Grothman sees marriage as some sort of automatic cure to child abuse. His solution was to introduce SB 570 which would require “The Child Abuse and Neglect Prevention Board to emphasize nonmarital parenthood as a contributing factor to child abuse and neglect.”
While it is a good idea to help unmarried couples or single or widowed parents, this is not what Grothman is trying to do. His effort is not to provide education, training or other guidance to parents and children in high risk categories. It is his idea to simply get these parents to wed because the problem will then lessen magically.
Grothman is right that 40% of the births in the U.S. are outside of marriage. He is also right that most of those births come in unstable situations. In the past, when almost all births were from married couples, there was still plenty of child abuse and neglect. That was because failed marriages stayed intact. Violence and abuse was endemic in those situations. Today, those bad marriages either never happened or ended quickly.
It is not accurate to say that just because a couple in a bad family situation is married then the children are safer. The problem of a poor family environment still exists whether a couple is married or not.
Nevertheless, Grothman sees this as simply a matter of choice. In Grothman’s eyes, the “unwanted or mistimed pregnancies” are the “choice of the women.” Yes, these are Grothman’s thoughts: Single women are getting pregnant by the millions deliberately. Grothman has done everything but throw pity at the poor men entrapped by these mischievous and lustful women.
Grothman put it another way. He said “I think a lot of women are adopting the single motherhood lifestyle because the government creates a situation in which it is almost preferred.”

And thus, Senator Grothman's march into history continues.

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