My granddaughter's first birthday party was held yesterday. It was a large gathering of family and friends -- a lovely celebration with good food, adorable children, and high spirits that weren't even dampened by the drenching thunderstorm that pounded the pavilion roof.
I was troubled by a conversation with my son's friends. They were talking about their financial difficulties in these troubled economic times. These are young men and women who work hard to provide for their families, but they are finding it increasingly hard to manage. One couple has a two-year old son and would love to have another child; however, they are currently paying $200/week for day care and cannot afford day care for a second child. They need both incomes to survive, so have decided for now to limit their family to one child.
How sad this is! When we were young, women had a choice; many women chose to stay home with their children. Of course, budgets were tight, but families could choose between comfortable incomes or more simple lives. For today's young families there is no choice. With ridiculously high housing prices, large college loan payments, expensive health insurance premiums, and now, skyrocketing gas and food prices, two incomes are a necessity, and then day care adds significantly to the equation.
It is a sad commentary on our cultural values when CEO's of large corporations make millions of dollars, and hard-working young people struggle to provide for their families. Corporate greed has bankrupted our economy. We have entered a new "Gilded Age".
I hope our citizens will give serious consideration to the economic plans of our presidential candidates. Can our nation's young families survive four more years of status quo Republican policies? I don't think so; these stressed and overburdened young parents deserve an economy which once again rewards hard work and promotes real family values.
Please think carefully before casting your vote this year. In the past eight years of Republican "free market" economy, the oil companies are thriving, and hard-working, honest Americans are losing their homes and declaring bankruptcy. Please vote Democrat and then hold them accountable for rebuilding a better America for our young families!!!!