A Tiger Mother’s take on raising a ‘genderless’ baby
Now the fabulously strict ‘Tiger Mother’ and law professor Amy Chua is a busy woman over the other side of the world. But thankfully she put all her parenting know-how into her tidy little book, Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother.
So I decided it would be entirely appropriate to use the book as an Oracle from which one can glean wisdom on the topic at hand by randomly picking quotes.
Lo and behold, it worked. Here’s Amy Chua’s take on the Canadian couple who decided to keep their four-month-old’s gender a secret as a “tribute to freedom”.
Q: Prof Chua, what’s your immediate reaction to the news of Storm’s involuntarily genderless state?
A: Children don’t choose their parents… they don’t even choose to be born.
Q: Very wise. Prof Chua, what sort of parents would do this to a young child?
A: Western parents come in all varieties. In fact, I’ll go out on a limb and say that Westerners are far more diverse in their parenting styles than the Chinese. Some Western parents are strict; others are lax.
Q: Prof Chua, how would you react if your daughters said they were going to adopt a similar approach with their own children?
A: I refuse to buckle to politically correct Western social norms that are obviously stupid. And not even rooted historically.
Q: Too right. Prof Chua, do you think there is an argument here for the authorities to intervene?
A: Pacing around a rustic room with a wooden floor were three large, regal Samoyeds. Two of them, we learned, were the proud parents of the new litter; the third was the grandfather, worldly and magisterial at the venerable age of six.
Q: Hmmm. OK. Prof Chua, don’t you think a child has the right to a childhood free from gender-related expectations?
A: I would never eat dog meat myself. I loved Lassie.
(At this point I decided on a slightly less random method of consulting the Oracle).
Q: Final question, Prof Chua; is this decision by Kathy Witterick and David Stocker symptomatic of all that is wrong in Western society?
A: All these Western parents with the same party line about what’s good for children and what’s not – I’m not sure they’re making choices at all. They just do what everyone else does. They’re not questioning anything either, which is what Westerners are supposed to be so good at doing. They just keep repeating things like ‘You have to give your children the freedom to pursue their passion’ when it’s obvious that the passion is just going to turn out to be Facebook for 10 hours which is a total waste of time and eating all that disgusting junk food – I’m telling you this country is going to go straight downhill! No wonder Western parents get thrown into nursing homes when they’re old!
Thanks for your time, Prof Chua.
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