Katie Couric Thinks Chelsea Clinton Should Be “Mom of the Year”

Glamour Magazine held a big swanky awards dinner last week to honor their picks for “Women of the Year 2014.” Woo-hoo. How very exciting. Not really, considering their choices. Out of the nine women picked, three are actresses (Laverne Cox, Mindy Kaling, Lupita Nyong’o), one is a fashion designer (Sarah Burton), one is in politics (Samantha Power), one is a journalist (Robin Roberts), and one is Chelsea Clinton. Only two of the women – a marine biologist, Sylvia Earle, and a supermodel who founded an autism support charity in Russia, Natalia Vodianova – are actually interesting choices. The other seven are completely predictable and boring choices.

But frankly, I don’t care, because Glamour can choose to give awards to whomever it chooses. It’s when one of those choices is held up as some kind of super-duper role model, then I am forced to raise an eyebrow.

Katie Couric interviewed Chelsea Clinton this week regarding her “Woman of the Year” award, and decided to really lay it on thick with typical liberal gushing.

Couric then went on to say how honored Chelsea must feel for being nominated as one of Glamour Magazine’s “Woman of the Year” candidates. “and I think it’s safe to say, probably a ‘Mom of the Year.’” the anchor added.

Excuse me? “Mom of the Year”??? Katie Couric, what are you thinking/drinking/smoking? Chelsea Clinton hasn’t even been a mother FOR a year. Her daughter Charlotte is six weeks old. In fact, she made the point that the awards dinner was the first time she’d made a public appearance since her daughter’s birth.

The Clinton-Mezvinksy family after the birth of Charlotte, six weeks ago
The Clinton-Mezvinksy family after the birth of Charlotte, six weeks ago

“This is my first night out as a mother,” Ms. Clinton said during her acceptance speech, six weeks after giving birth to her daughter, Charlotte. “I had started to somewhat wonder if I would ever wear a fancy dress or high-heeled shoes again. Or have adult conversations.”

A grinning Hillary Rodham Clinton sat a few rows deep.

Yeah, well, welcome to motherhood, Chelsea Clinton. Join the club.

Frankly, these kind of questions are not Chelsea Clinton’s fault. It’s the fault of everyone around her that has been determined since her father became president that she should never experience any kind of failure. She is bright and has multiple degrees (which reduced her parents to absolute poverty, if you believe her mother), but that doesn’t make her a better mother to a six week old infant. Babies at six weeks are either sleeping, crying, eating or pooping. In between those things are magical moments, where the baby is content and awake, maybe gazing with big soulful eyes at the world around them. But no college degree is going to help a mother enjoy those magical moments better. And no college degree is going to get you out of that 2 am feeding, either.

But Chelsea Clinton has been told all of her life that she is exceptional and special. She was so special that NBC paid her $600,000 a year just to have a Clinton on the payroll doing puff pieces for TV. Katie Couric is just doing what everyone else around Chelsea Clinton has always done – participating in a massive amount of suck-uppery just because of her maiden name. Because I really doubt that Mrs. Chelsea Mezvinsky would be hailed as “Mom of the Year” after six weeks of motherhood.

The good news is that motherhood offers ample opportunities for a whole lot of failure. So even in that carefully crafted bubble of the Clintons and their circles of influence and power, Chelsea is bound to discover what failure looks and feels like. We the public may never see her daughter’s tantrums, or refusal to nap, or throwing her vegetables against a wall. But it will happen.

I wish the Mezvinksy family all the best, and nothing but continued joy and health for little Charlotte. But is her mother “Mom of the Year”? No way.

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Ava Gardner