Friday, June 10, 2005

Daycare

Some anonymous person (very brave of you, by the way) commented on my last post wondering if my obviously sarcastic reference to "socialist daycare" was serious and leaving a link to a wholly bogus site called "Daycares Don't Care," which basically smears the entire concept of daycare, offers no alternatives, shares all kinds of "facts" about what happens to kids who spend time in daycare and the care they receive there, and finally encourages people to write to their representatives asking them to "end unfair tax policies that favor paid child care over parental care of children." Tax policies? Huh? If such policies exist, they must be absolutely the only thing our government does to embrace the reality of working parents and daycare.

Here are a few more tasty tidbits from this site:

"Are you sick of politicians and others pushing for more government daycare subsidies? Tired of hearing people brag about the "benefits" of institutionalized child care? Most importantly, do you want to put an end to government policies that promote the childcare industry instead of the welfare of our children?"

Uh... right. Which politicians are those? How many parents do you know who brag about the benefits of institutionalized childcare? Which government policies promote the childcare industry? Perhaps the person who wrote this lives in Europe.

In the FAQ section:
"Although I never felt comfortable with the whole idea of daycare, I kept my opinion to myself.
As time went on, however, I became fed up with people continually hounding me to place my kids in day-care. I began to look for information to defend my decision.
The last straw came after my sister's eldest son suffered multiple compound fractures and his little sister almost died from a severe infection while attending daycare at a state-of-the-art facility at a prestigious university!
This got me so upset that I decided to put the information I collected on the Web, so that parents could easily find out about the serious problems with day care."

Okay, again, I'm not sure where this woman lives, but I've been a SAHM for over ten years, and I have never been "hounded" by anyone to put my kids in day-care. And yeah, we've all heard the horror stories about what can happen to kids in bad daycare. Then again -- kids can get hurt at school. They can get hurt at home. And, as a response to the experiences of two children at one childcare center, starting a site to rail against daycare as a concept is extreme, simplistic and alarmist. Good job.

"Q: Why is this website so one-sided? Why are you saying day care is bad?
"A:OK, just what is the other side you're referring to? That daycare is good for kids?
If you think that day care is good for kids, is more daycare even better?
What's the next step? Keeping children and babies in day-care 24 hours per day, 7 days a week? That's ridiculous!"

No, your logic is ridiculous. You live in a fantasy world, while most of us prefer reality. You probably believed all that crap about how passing the ERA was going to lead to unisex restrooms too, right?

Obviously, the "other side" is better daycare, not more. No one except maybe Newt Gingrich has ever suggested putting kids in childcare 24 hours a day (and his ideas were based more on the idea of punishing the poor for not being able to afford to support their families, so not exactly the kind of warm and fuzzy family-friendly stuff you're promoting on your site, right?).

Are you in junior high? Your debating skills seem to be at about that level.

"Q.Why doesn't your website offer any solutions to fix the problems with daycare?
"A. No amount of legislation, government funding, money, early childhood training, regulations, or inspections can fix the problems with daycare. Raising small children in substitute care is an experiment that has failed."

Your insistence that daycare is too complicated to be fixed by the government is based on what? Exhaustive research? Give me a break. I know know lots of great kids -- happy, healthy, well-adjusted -- who have spent time in daycare. Several of my friends work in childcare and are very good at their jobs. I have happily left my kids in their care from time to time. That childcare is a failed experiment is your opinion. A lot of others feel differently. Not to mention the fact that, regardless of whether you or anyone else likes the idea of daycare -- what is the alternative?

Our government is anti-family, anti-working-parent, anti-poor-people, and intent on supporting corporations and defense over the welfare of its citizens. They tried to pass off that lame, half-assed unpaid family leave bill back in the early 90s as some kind of huge victory for families. Do you really think that pay for parents who stay home to care for their children is on the horizon any time soon? Because I don't. And until that happens, parents are going to have to go to work. And for many of us, that means daycare. You can sit there and bitch and moan from your ivory tower if you like, but really -- what are you accomplishing? I could publish a whole site about how some people have what I think are really ugly feet, and how this bad bad bad and no one should have ugly feet -- but some people would still have really ugly feet and need them to walk on now matter how much I hated that. That would be pointless, right?

I don't know who the person who left the anonymous comment linking to this stupid website is. I suspect they typed some words into a search engine and my blog came up. But if they actually read my post, they would have known what my views on this subject are. Anonymous, if you're reading this -- the website you linked to is a load of crap. The opposite of bad daycare is good daycare, not NO daycare. And if you're not part of the solution, guess what? You're part of the problem. So please go away.

3 comments:

Chad said...

Having read some (too many quotes, didn't flow very well) of the website provided by Anonymous, am I to believe that the only alternative to daycare is no daycare (biased information leads to a biased answer?) In this world then parents would only be given the privelige of having kids if they can support them on one income. Would this be suggested or forced upon our citizens? If Suugested, you would have to outlaw daycare? Perhaps we could spade or neuter the ones that don't make enough on one salary? Better yet in a similar reality, the government could pay each family for the lost income for one of the parents for child-rearing.

I see the website as nothing more than someone venting because they witnessed someone else's child recieving bad childcare. Then in Rush Limbaugh fashion, decided to put together a bunch of so-called facts together by finding quotes from many differnt sources (And like Rush Limbaugh usually out of context) to reinforce their opinion. It is alright to speak your opinion, but just say it yourself and not through a bunch of other people's phrases.

Tania Silver said...

I really wish I hadn't clicked on that "Daycares Don't Care" website.

To add insult to injury, I just saw an article in this month's Psychology Today titled, "The Trouble With Day Care".

They made me feel just awful, like I'm I a bad mother...

Tracie said...

Don't let them make you feel bad, Tania. I'm sure you are a good mom and your daycare situation is fine. I'm sick of people guilting parents, especially mothers, about this stuff, when the vast majority of us are doing the best that we can. That Daycares
Don't Care website is merely the scattered, badly organized rantings of some woman with an ax to grind. I'm going to check out the Psychology Today article right now...