Tuesday, June 23, 2009


Allow me for a moment to feed off the hype from the reality TV nightmare that is "Jon and Kate + 8".

I am hopelessly addicted, for no other reason than I get teary eyed by watching those little faces and big eyes. They fascinate me, the way they communicate and interact. It's wonderful! A second component, which doesn't particularly please me but still keeps me interested, is Kate. Not because I think she's anything special, but because I need to reaffirm myself of the woman that I want to be (read: NOT KATE). I stand firm in my belief that their marriage is disintegrating not as a result of the show, nor as a result of Kate's shrill and hateful demeanor (really!). It all started over five years ago; Jon and Kate went to shit because they were too pro-life. Observe:

If you watch closely, you can understand very clearly that Jon never wanted more than two kids. He was 23 for cryin' out loud! In fact, as the story goes, Kate begged and pleaded for one more (just one more!), and Jon relented. To make her happy? Possibly. To make her shut up? More likely.

Mistake #1: Intentionally having children you don't want.

Kate undergoes further fertility treatment to conceive. Rumor has it that they had the opportunity to adopt a baby, but passed (reasons unknown). Kate went ahead with the treatments and ended up with seven embryos (one miscarried). She - as a nurse and as a common sense human being - knew that said treatments tend to result in multiples. They pump you full of baby material for tens of thousands, damned if they don't get it right - and then some. Was Jon aware of the risk? Who knows. His self-professed lack of communication skills could have caused him to wander blindly into this travesty.

Mistake #2: Conning your unwilling husband into having more children than he's interested in.

Congratulations, you're pregnant with far more fetuses than the human body is equipped to carry! Doctors recommended selective reduction, the abortion of some of the fetuses to allow the others room to develop and reduce competition for resources. Speaking of resources: Jon had some sort of entry-level IT job; I think we can safely say that without a college degree he was not raking it in. Kate was a nurse, but probably not a well-off one. She was young herself (25?) and - assuming she actually had an advanced degree in nursing - probably a n00b in the field. They were living in a moderate sized condo, perfect for FOUR PEOPLE. Finally, note that in this family full of aunts and uncles, fewer than a handful were ever on board to help out.

Mistake #3: Kidding yourself.

Now, allow me to disclaim that as a pro-choice individual I am expected to respect the reproductive choices that Jon and Kate made. Sure, I respect that. But man, am I pissed about it. The love these morons have for kids is overwhelming: they love them so much that they have to quit their actual jobs and whore them on cable TV to survive; they risk the kids' safety each time they go out in public; they risk normalcy, childhood, by having to teach their kids at the tender age of five why daddy doesn't live with them anymore; and above all, they had them when they were young and stupid and completely unprepared for the realities of the choices they were making. A shame. And thank God that these are happy and intelligent kids. If they were any less well-adjusted there would be a shitstorm of child protective services and Rorschach blots.

This is where abortion saves lives and hearts. Imagine if Jon and Kate had had just one more. They'd struggle, sure. They wouldn't get to go on ski trips to Utah or have weddings in a tropical paradise. They'd probably send their kids to public school, and probably wouldn't eat 100% organic. They might adopt a pound puppy instead of buying purebreads. Jon might have finished his degree, earned more money. Kate might have been happy with that. And they might have saved eight children from the horrifying reality of having every angst-ridden moment of their childhoods documented on film or in print. This my friends, is the side of choice that we rarely see: women are often criticized for having too many abortions, but what about those women who have too few? Why is this not considered a form of child abuse?

I just hope it was all worth it; just one more little bundle of joy for decades of hurt and regret.

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