Sunday, May 11, 2008

Happy Mother's Day

What I really wanted to write about today was the mothers in Nigeria and Ecuador. I found a story about a mother who died in childbirth because there was no blood in the hospital. But other than that I had a lot of trouble -- it's just a longer search, I think. Or I am impatient to get to cleaning for my mother and x-mother-in-law who are coming over soon. In any event -- here's an article that caught my eye. Not the best ever -- but Happy Mother's Day.

Who most deserves a pay raise?

Reed Markham | Special To The Orlando Sentinel
May 11, 2008

Are you smarter than a fifth-grader? What is your answer to the following multiple-choice question: Who is most deserving of a pay raise in 2008?

A. Oil-company executives

B. The president of the United States

C. Florida mothers

I am sure that oil-company executives, relaxing in their yacht today, voted for A.

They receive huge salaries and perks. The Associated Press reported last month that "Exxon Mobil Corp., whose $40 billion profit last year again broke the record for a U.S. company, gave chairman and CEO Rex Tillerson an 18 percent raise to $21.7 million." Oh, by the way, he also received $429,792 in other compensation, including $229,331 for personal security, $41,122 for personal use of company aircraft, and $9,150 for financial planning.

I am sure that President Bush would vote for B.

When he was elected in 2000, the president's pay was only $200,000 a year. In 2001, his annual salary was increased to $400,000 per year, including a $50,000 expense allowance.

So I believe that the correct answer is C. Florida mothers deserve a huge salary increase. developed a valuation of a "mom job" and determined the time that mothers spend for performing 10 typical job functions. According to, the average mother works 92 hours a week. The study concluded, "The job titles that best matched a mom's definition of her work are (in order of hours spent per week): housekeeper, day-care-center teacher, cook, computer operator, laundry-machine operator, janitor, facilities manager, van driver, CEO, and psychologist." According to the Web site, the average salary of a stay-at-home mother should be $138,095.

Florida mothers, with great courage and perseverance, go about the business of raising our future Floridians: scientists, teachers, writers, doctors, nurses, political leaders. These great mothers are courageous in the face of tough economic times, figuring out a way to make ends meet while gasoline and food prices skyrocket.

Abraham Lincoln, one of our greatest presidents, said this about mothers: "All that I am or ever hope to be I owe to my angel mother."

Thomas Edison observed, "My mother was the making of me. She was so true and so sure of me. I felt that I had someone to live for -- someone I must not disappoint. The memory of my mother will always be a blessing to me."

The author Sterling W. Sill wrote: "We admire the artist who presents man upon the canvas. We applaud the sculptor who carves that same image in the enduring marble, but oh how insignificant are these achievements, though the highest and fairest in all the realms of art, as compared to the great vocation of the human mother. She works not upon canvas that will fade or upon marble that will crumble into dust, but upon mind and spirit that will endure forever and bear throughout eternity the noble impress of a mother's hand."

Florida is fortunate to have so many great mothers. They are the most deserving of a pay raise.

Reed Markham of DeLand is a former speechwriter for the U.S. Supreme Court.

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