Saturday, January 19, 2008

The Accidental Conservative

So, I consider myself to be very, very moderate with a healthy sprinkle of crunchy. We cloth diaper (well, my husband does and I do when I don't have an overactive gag reflex), we buy local and organic at least part of the time, we drive a hybrid car but we also vaccinate, I use an OB and have no interest in a home birth, I'm pretty sure Charlie will attend public school, etc. Yet, somehow over the last year I have managed to wander into any number of activities that are affiliated with the religious right.

I joined MOPs last year when I reached the point where I just had to get out of the house. It's somehow linked with Focus on the Family. It's an oblique link and I have had trouble finding anything on it's web site that spells it out but it's very much there. While a good portion of the programs are focused on things like discussions of quilting, ways to pamper yourself, etc, there are usually one or two talks that veer pretty heavily into realms that aren't so much on the neutral side. It's still a good way for me to meet other mommies, get a break from Charlie, and, for what you get, it's very reasonably priced but there are a few meetings that I am learning to skip.

Now, my husband and I have decided to attend Financial Peace University with a curriculum by Dave Ramsey. He doesn't spend huge amounts of time discussing faith but I think I can safely say that Jame Dobson would approve and they might even be buddies.

As a side note: No, we aren't drowning in debt or anything like that but we were raised with 2 very different philosophies of money management and this fell in our laps as a way that we can perhaps come to some middle ground about how best to go about things like budgeting. After 7.5 years of marriage, it doesn't appear that we've really gotten all that far on the issue on our own.

I joined diaper swappers the other week in hopes of finding some good deals on new itty, bitty diapers for our new itty, bitty person with an itty, bitty heinie! We generally use BumGenius, which are great. They are a one size diaper that technically fits from birth through when your child will probably be potty trained. But, I've heard that they can be a little bulky for newborns so we're looking into getting kissaluvs for the new little person to use at first. We've really liked our cloth experience. They save quite a bit of money, have helped a lot with Charlie's never ending diaper rash, and are much more environmentally friendly. They aren't nearly as much of a pain as I thought they would be in terms of washing and are as easy to use as disposables. Should you ever want to try them, we did the Try Cloth program through Jillian's Drawer's. It's fully refundable except for $10 and is a great way to get your feet wet. Anyway, so diaper swappers has a pretty large contingent of women who would probably self-identify as religious conservatives. It's one of those weird places where the really liberal, off the grid because they want to be one with nature collide with the really conservative, off the grid, make your own food, be ready for The End groups. I always find those intersections interesting if a bit bewildering since I really just wanted to get a good deal on kissaluvs.

Finally, broomhuggers, which I find to be a great resource for green cleaning tips posted a big anti-abortion post. I could see where they were coming from but it was still jarring to see abortion positions nestled between tips about how to use oregeno oil as a disinfectant and the controversy of if one should use dryer balls made from PVC that are reusable or dryer sheets that are disposable.

I am worried that soon I will manage to wander into a Huckabee rally and wind up with a picture of me shaking his hand.


mudlarktales said...

Thanks for visiting us at Broomhuggers! I appreciate the links to the cloth diaper trial too - it gives me hope that I can actually switch to cloth diapers with baby #3 (coming soon!). I'm looking forward to making the switch from disposable to cloth, but I didn't know how. I can't wait to do the Try Cloth program!

As for the abstinence post, it's hard to say something of substance and personal value without offending someone. I guess what tends to upset us is the double-standard we see in a lot of environmentalists - desperate to save some species of algae, but willing to abort a baby?

Anyhow, thanks for stopping by, and thank you so much for the links you posted here!

Anonymous said...

Talk about double standard. The pro-choice movement is not about aborting babies. To imply that women who seek out abortions do so with any sort of murderous intent is not only insulting to the woman and the gravity of the situation but also a ridiculous and unfounded statement. Rather, the pro-choice movement is concerned with preserving the right to CHOICE -- ensuring that all women everywhere are able to choose what to do with THEIR bodies. Just as an environmentalist appreciates the right to CHOOSE which diaper they use. How is that for a double standard?

Sarah said...

I am a member of Diaperswappers and really just joined for the same reasons you did. We use cloth part of the time...just to save money here and there. I find it funny the differences in the people on there! You have both extremes and very few in the middle. I find myself a bit on the outside sometimes because I dont really have any convictions to be really "crunchy" (I actaully just found out what crunchy meant after being on DS a few days!)but Im not totally "mainstream" either. Im just me, I guess...and there arent a lot like me on the board! I do enjoy the opinions and drama that happens sometimes tho! its kinda fun to watch and see how its plays out!

Sarah said...

OH...and wanted to add that Dave Ramsey is great! We are now debt free because of him! Whoohoo! It works and it feels SO good to be out of debt! Its worth every bit of sacrifice!!!

Jenn @ Frugal Upstate said...

Honestly, I would probably catagorize myself as a conservative-yet I am a middle of the road conservative, with "crunchy con" leanings :) Growing up, my folks thought I was going to wind up a hippy (but then I joined the Army, go figure).

Anyway, as a conservative, I find it interesting that sometimes folks on the more liberal side are guilty of lumping in all conservatives with the more extreme right wing folks-just like some conservatives are guilty of lumping all liberals in with the extreme left wings. To me some of the things you are labeling as "conservative" behaviors in this post are more indicative of those extreme right wingers-rather than being characteristics that the bulk of folks who might label themselves as being conservative would necessarily exhibit.

As for MOPs-of which I am a member. Their leanings as far as I have seen are more along the lines of evangelical Christian-a bit. But it really depends on what the sponsoring church is. It is very definitely a Christian organization, but if you were to attend one sponsored by a catholic church, Episcopal Church or Lutheran Church, you might find it had a very different flavor than one run by a Pentecostal, Vineyard, E-Free etc. I just think for some reason that the more evangelical churches are more focused on "outreach" type missions, and are therefore more likely to try to start a MOPs group. Those are just my observations from attempting to start one up last year at my Episcopal church.

Interesting post :)