Leave it to the Washington Post to NOT get a joke–as noted by other here and on Bench Memos–re the homemaker comment. Here’s a another headline for the Post: “Shakespeare Advocated Homicide Against Lawyers” (“First, let’s kill all the lawyers”….) I’ve been a Homemaker and Mom at home AND a lawyer — and being a Mom at home was the much harder job and one undervalued by society as we all know. Roberts’s joke was a joke about lawyers NOT against women whose work — in and out of the home — the young John Roberts clearly valued. Judge Roberts has three sisters who appear to me to be quite strong willed and a wife who is a lawyer. The fact that the young John Roberts — an incredibly accomplished lawyer at that point — did not consider being a lawyer the end all and be all of life is refreshing. This desperate piece by the Post is really a cry for help from a humorless lot.
I also recall fondly at my graduation from Georgetown law school that Justice Sandra Day O’Connor — the Justice whom Judge Roberts will replace — spent much more time in her graduation speech talking about the value of the 10 years that she spent as an at home mother with her three boys than she did on her legal credentials. I was pleased years later when I headed up the Department of Public Affairs at the Justice Department to meet Justice O’Connor and have the opportunity to tell her how much her graduation speech meant to me as I sat in the audience that day with my family which included my then two young sons, who were 3 and 1. I decided to have another baby before worrying about my legal career — but I got a girl instead of 3 boys. I only was able to be a stay at home Mom for seven years — not ten like Justice O’Connor — so who knows what I could have done with myself if I had had those three more years at home with my kids!