The Tea Party has a list of 15 “core beliefs” on their website. The last one says, “Traditional family values are encouraged.”
What does that even mean?
What is a traditional family? One mom, one dad, 2.3 children, a dog and a tract house in the suburbs? 2014 is not “Leave it to Beaver.”
I have friends with beautiful families. Some of those friends are single. Others are married, divorced and have been married prior to their current relationship. Some of them have kids. Some have dogs. Some live in the city. They have birthday parties, jobs and second mortgages. And they’re families.
I consider my own family and my own values. In many ways, I have very traditional values. I support my husband; he supports me. We married in 1985 and had a son in 1987. We own a home. He cuts the grass; I grow stuff in the dirt. He golfs. I sew. We vote. We pay our bills. We donate to charities. On the other hand, we have just the one kid. I think it might be traditional to have more than one.
Growing up, I lived with my biological mother and father, who were married before I was conceived in 1964 – very traditional. My older sister and brother had a different dad. My mom was married before she met my father. My little sister is my older sister’s daughter. She’s my niece, and my parents adopted her when she was 3-ish.
Not so traditional.
Yet that environment created me. I have strong family values. I believe families come in all shapes and sizes. I believe in love relatives, not just blood relatives. I have “sisters” I’m not even related to.
I am a heterosexual woman, and I believe two women or two men can parent a family as well as I can.
The whole concept of “traditional family values” is false. It’s illogical. There is no such thing as a traditional family. There are, however, values.
Values – like morals – are within. They’re based in respect and kindness; knowing right from wrong. Values can come from family, but they don’t automatically come from family. That’s why I say the concept is false.
Of course I know what the term means in relation to the Tea Party.
They’re trying to court the Ward Cleaver family.