This article contains commentary which reflects the author's opinion
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Throughout history, one powerful force has consistently advocated for change, made a difference in our communities and influenced policy: mothers.
Women in the trenches of motherhood have long been working for causes close to their hearts, and there’s nothing closer to their hearts than their children. Mothers have affected change all over the world, while raising the next generation and keeping the home fires burning.
Moms: Difference Makers From The Start
Moms have been making things happen since biblical times. One of the most well-known stories in the Old Testament involves Jochebed, the mother of Moses. Putting her great faith into action, she saved her son from certain death by placing him in a basket among the reeds in the Nile River. He was found by Pharaoh’s daughter and grew up to lead the Israelites out of Egypt and receive the Ten Commandments from God. It all started because his mother fought for him.
Mothers are still using their passion and their voices to make the world better in modern times. From leading the cause for women’s suffrage like Elizabeth Cady Stanton (who did so while raising seven children) to founding Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) like Candy Lightner to fighting to eliminate land mines like Diana, Princess of Wales, moms have made a difference in every area of society and in every generation.
Ordinary moms have successfully lobbied Congress for everything from stricter gun laws to tighter restrictions on school contact sports to healthcare issues impacting children.
Wall Of Moms?
The collective voice of mothers is so powerful and irreplaceable that other groups are desperate to replicate their influence. During the recent nightly protests in Portland, Oregon, a “wall of moms” group showed up to support for protesters and demonstrate against police. The “wall of moms” concept took off, spreading to other large cities seeing similar protests.
Andy Ngo provides eyewitness reports on Antifa for The Post Millenial, work he’s been doing for several years. In a now-deleted tweet, Ngo reported that many of the moms in the Portland “wall” were not moms at all; some weren’t even women. From his extensive experience covering Antifa, Ngo recognized many of the people who formed the wall and says they are bluffing, using the power of moms to advance their cause and justify resistance to police.
And Ngo isn’t the only one who recognized the truth about the “wall of moms” – an NPR story noted the inconsistency, too.
Moms motivated by their children’s well-being or safety will always make a bigger difference than moms (or “moms”) out to prove a political point.
Rising Crime In NYC Driving Families Away
Meanwhile, across the country, a group of actual moms made news for protecting their children. Many moms are fleeing the increasing crime of New York City and the Upper West Side to give their kids a safer place to grow up. Crimes are rising rapidly in the formerly safe neighborhood: a woman randomly stabbed in a subway station, a man attacked while dining outside with his wife, and many others.
City officials recently converted three upscale hotels in the neighborhood to homeless shelters, to protect some 300 residents from the spread of coronavirus. Most disturbingly, several of the new residents are convicted sex offenders – and the hotel sits a mere 1,000 feet from an elementary school playground.
It’s easy to see why parents are concerned.
Moms say they don’t feel safe letting their kids be outside and even taking them along on errands is fraught with worry, with vagrants offering drugs on the street and overdosing in grocery stores.
Leaving Crime Behind
One group of moms started a Facebook group to advocate for safer streets in the city. NYC Moms for Safer Streets formed after a shooting on a playground last fall. Some of these moms have decided they can’t wait for safer streets and have moved. The coronavirus has resulted in millions of work-from-home options, so families have the freedom to keep jobs and still relocate to places that are safer, have lower taxes, better schools and – of course – less crime.
In New York City, the exodus of families has significant trickle-down effects, such as less money invested in the arts and a dip in real estate value, plus the city could also lose as much as $300 million in tax revenue. This is, ultimately, the bottom line of mom power and may be just the thing that motivates city leaders to action.
Other advocates from Moms for Safer Streets plan to stay and fight for the city they love. Both approaches will result in change and, hopefully, better lives for families. The important thing is that they’re fighting for a cause that protects and enriches the lives of their children, with each mom choosing the best option for her unique family situation.
The Power Of Moms
A mother is a child’s most powerful advocate; an inspired mom can and will move mountains. Whether working on a local level to improve schools by volunteering with the PTA or taking their cause to Congress, moms have an extraordinarily powerful voice. In any fight – from ancient Egypt to the Big Apple – having a mom on your side is a significant advantage.
A mom on a mission is simply one of the world’s most powerful forces.
Rebecca Horvath is an editor and writer for NRN. For nearly a decade, Horvath wrote a regular Community Voices column for the Johnson City Press, where she was known to ruffle a few feathers. In 2018, she began writing for the National Federation of Republican Women, interviewing and profiling candidates such as Sen. Martha McSally and Sen. Cindy Hyde-Smith. Horvath also contributes to Net3d.home.blog.