Happy Monday, folks. I love the winter solstice, because I always feel more cheerful about the growing daylight. OK, so it’s only infinitesimal amounts of daylight at this point, but still! Anyway, a few stories that caught my eye of late.
South Australian Greens Senator Sarah Hanson-Young is embroiled in a small-ish controversy here in Australia. Hanson-Young, who is in her first term of Parliament, is mother to 2-year old Kora, and the family seems to commute between Parliament in Canberra and their hometown in Adelaide. Last week, Hanson-Young was in the midst of saying good-bye to Kora before the toddler was taken back to Adelaide when a vote on a bill was called. Hanson-Young, like most of us multi-tasking parents, sat Kora on her hip and tried to take the vote while giving Kora one last cuddle. Not so fast:
GREENS Senator Sarah Hanson-Young wanted five minutes with her daughter Kora yesterday before the two-year-old was flown back to Adelaide.
But when the bells rang through Parliament House, calling her for a vote, her plan ended in tears and set off a debate about the place of children in Parliament.
When she took Kora into the chamber, Senate President John Hogg was unimpressed. “We can’t allow children to be in here for a division,” he said.
Greens leader Bob Brown objected, but Senator Hogg insisted. Senator Hanson-Young passed her child to a staff member at the chamber doors. The girl burst into tears, and her cries could be heard through the thick Senate doors after they were locked for the vote.
As she left Parliament House last night, an upset Senator Hanson-Young said she had “never felt so humiliated”.
Since 2003, infants have been allowed into Parliament for breastfeeding, but not toddlers. Green Party leader Bob Brown will press the Senate to change its rules to allow children in with their parent
“I don’t think there should be any workplace where mothers or fathers and an infant as small as that should be separated in a way that happened today,” Senator Brown said.
“I don’t know of any employer that’s going to say you can’t have five minutes with your child. Of course, that’s not sensible.”
What say you, MTs? Should the rules be changed?
On a lighter note, I’m not much for romcoms – recent ones, anyway. But I just might go see The Proposal. Why? One woman: Betty White. She’s doing press for the movie, including this NYT A night Out With … feature:
But you don’t catch up with Ms. White as you much as you serve as part of a comedy routine. To wit: Ms. Fletcher, nibbling on a dainty egg salad sandwich, had a question for her new buddy. “Is there anything left that you would really like to do?“ she asked.
“Robert Redford,“ Ms. White answered instantaneously. She smiled sweetly and pointed to a bottle of clear liquid on the table. “What’s that?“ she asked. Syrup to sweeten the iced tea, Ms. Fletcher answered.
“Darn it,“ Ms. White cracked. “I hoped it was vodka.“
For further evidence of Ms. White’s awesomeness, check out this video on Funny or Die – it’s too cute.
So, what’s going on with you today?