British supermarket chain Waitrose this year introduced a gender-neutral Mother’s Day card that reads: ‘Happy You Day’ against a floral background. No one would have likely noticed or cared if not for an article that appeared in The Sunday Times, which called attention to the store’s efforts to expand “who the cards can go to, whether it’s grandmas or transgender mums.”
This brought a conservative swarm out in force, naturally. Though there are thousands of other, gendered Mother’s Day cards and teddy bears and chocolates out there, this single card was just. too. much. for some folks to stomach:
I’d include more Twitter responses but frankly, scrolling through lists of anti-trans screeds turns my stomach.
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There are plenty of people—trans, childless, nonbiological mothers, etc.—who might benefit from these cards. For example, I like to send a Mother’s Day card to my godmother, who does not have any children. She is still an important maternal figure in my life, but I sometimes wonder whether it wouldn’t fit better to send her a card that didn’t have the word mother plastered across it.
On the flip side, if non-biological-mothers want to use the word mother, who cares? Parenting, I’ve heard, takes a village.
People are upset over a damn card, just one out of many in a sea of corporatized “celebrations” of family. If the biological fact of mothering is so important to certain people, they could petition Waitrose for a “Thanks For Expelling Me Through Your Birth Canal” balloon.