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GOP Lawmaker Opposes Early Child Education Bill Because It Takes Mothers 'Out of the Home'

GOP Lawmaker Opposes Early Child Education Bill Because It Takes Mothers 'Out of the Home'

Just because it's Women's History Month in the year 2021 doesn't mean antiquated ideas about gender and its corresponding roles no longer inform political decision making.

One need look no further than Boise, Idaho, where one Republican lawmaker voiced opposition to a grant that would provide millions of dollars to expand access to pre-Kindergarten education for Idaho's toddlers.

State Representative Charlie Shepherd gave his reason for voting against H.B. 226 on the House floor earlier this week, and it's been met with serious pushback.

Watch below.

A Republican is against education bill because it's 'convenient for mothers to come out of the home'

Shepherd said:

"I don't think anybody does a better job than mothers in the home, and any bill that makes it easier or more convenient for mothers to come out of the home and let somebody else raise their child, I just don't think that's a good direction for us to be going."

Shepherd's antiquated opinion comes from the long-held belief among men that "a woman's place is in the home," rather than in offices, social gatherings, or anywhere else that might reinforce the reality that they're autonomous individuals and not the property of their husbands.

After widespread outcry, Shepherd apologized, saying:

"My intent was to compliment mothers... I stand before you now to admit I failed miserably....My remarks sounded derogatory, offensive, and even sexist toward the mothers of this state."

He continued:

"I have learned the hard way that misguided statements do not help solve anything. I sincerely apologize to any and all I have offended, and I will work hard to right any wrongs that I have done."

People clarified that his remarks didn't just sound "derogatory, offensive, and even sexist."

Many felt the apology was insufficient.

H.B. 226 narrowly failed, though the bill will likely be revisited in the future.