It is unfortunate that in our politically correct age, people who ask legitimate questions are often immediately accused of being racist or sexist or bigoted in some way. We saw this last week when someone on HeraldTimesOnline.com asked if Allison Chopra, running as a Democrat in the third city council district, will “really have the proper amount of time to devote to the Council.” That was immediately denounced as “a sexist comment from the right.”
But is it really a sexist comment?
Chopra is in law school, which can be an enormous amount of work. She also has two children. I am a few years younger than Chopra, and like her I have two children. (I have a one year old and a three year old.) Between that and my other responsibilities, running for office as a major party candidate is therefore off the table for the time being. I did not even run for delegate to the Republican state convention last year because the convention was in Fort Wayne instead of Indianapolis, and my younger son was two months old.
Am I just consumed by anti-male bigotry and self-hatred?
It is reasonable to ask if someone who has a lot of responsibilities if they will be capable of fulfilling his or her duties as an elected official. That is not a sexist question, because it can be asked of both men and women. Immediately accusing someone of sexism for asking that question does a disservice to everyone involved because it “poisons the well” and reduces the civility in politics. These unfounded accusations do not change minds or advance an argument.
Now, can Chopra fulfill her duties as a city councilor, if she elected this November? It has been said that if you want something done, ask a busy person. I am sure that she can make time to serve the city and her district. I do not think that is an issue in this race. (But again, it is not sexist to ask the question.) The issue will be the policy differences between Chopra and her Republican opponent. I am looking forward to see that debate unfold over the course of the next few months.