The Romneys are not like you and me.
[Ann] Romney alluded to the fact that not all women can stay at home saying, “I love the fact that there are women out there who don’t have a choice and they must go to work and they still have to raise the kids. Thank goodness that we value those people too. And sometimes life isn’t easy for any of us.”
You know who doesn’t love the fact that there are women (and men) who have no choice but to work, rather than staying home full-time? It’s those women (and men) who have no choice but to work. That’s not something they celebrate; that’s something they lament.
I don’t blame Ann, though, any more than I blame Mitt for his rich guy gaffes. Because the Romneys aren’t like you and me. They don’t know what it is to struggle to pay the bills. The worst they ever had to go through was deciding when to sell part of their hundreds of thousands of dollars in stock to pay the bills. Ann never had to work; she could have, but she had the option not to. For that matter, Mitt never had to struggle to get his foot in the door; he was the son of a cabinet secretary. He had his dad’s connections and his family name to trade on.
If the Romneys would show some sign of understanding that they’re tremendously lucky, I could accept it. If they showed any evidence that they realized that their experiences weren’t typical, that their experiences were not the same as most normal humans — well, I could accept that. I can understand them not knowing it from experience, but at least they’d show some hint that they had some empathy.
But they don’t. They simply haven’t spent time trying to imagine what it would be like to be poor or middle class. They have no understanding of what it means to struggle, not for a moment. They don’t get it. And far worse, they don’t want to.