Originally Posted by Galatea
B/c having healthy children and mothers is a societal good.
EXACTLY. The thing is, many mamas and families are having to make the horrible choice about going back to work within a truly inhumanely short period of time. Many babes are missing out on breast milk, many mamas are suffering PPD, babes suffer from attachment issues and early illnesses abound. The long term costs and effects of these things are huge.
As a society, we stand up on a lot of things and say that its important to us to make sure they are basic rights of our citizens and that we'll all chip in for them. In the US, that includes care for our elderly(to an extent), free public education, public roads, and emergency services just to name a few.
I agree that the burden on small businesses would be great, but its not like there aren't small businesses pretty much EVERY OTHER DEVELOPED country in the world that seems to offer greater support to their new mamas and babies. It seems to be something that they have surmounted. Its not like there aren't creative solutions to issues such as these.
And there is also the whole issue of how women are cared for in this country in general. Insurance companies are turning down women for previous c/s, BUT viagra and other impotence medications are covered for men.
Sorry, didn't mean to get so soapbox-y. I just think that taking care of our families should be something we care about a bit more as a society, not just amongst ourselves. My husband and I have spent a lot of time living in West Africa. Granted, the poverty and disease are issues, but kids are looked out for. Moms get time with them, they have a huge community of people who will watch them, and they are considered treasures, not burdens on society. Can you just imagine, with the resources we have in this country, if we were to adopt such a mentality, how much greater we could be?