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Kim Voynar

By Kim Voynar

On the Stupidity of Mike Huckabee and Michael Medved Taking Harvard-Educated, 29-Year-Old, Pregnant Natalie Portman to Task for Setting Such a Bad Example

**Editor’s Note: A lot of smart people have gone to Yale, but Natalie Portman was not one of them. She went to Harvard. Correction duly made, with thanks to the reader who spotted my egregious error, apologies to Ms. Portman for insinuating she chose Yale, and Harvard people everywhere offended by the mix-up. Mea culpa.

So former presidential candidate/former governor of Arkansas (and, let’s not forget kids, likely presidential candidate in 2012) Mike Huckabee has an issue with Natalie Portman being unwed and pregnant. So sayeth The Hollywood Reporter, who picked it up from

If you read the Media Matters piece, you’ll note that this all actually came from an interview with Huckabee on the February 27th edition of The Michael Medved Show, which makes it even less surprising. The controversial quote happened in response to Medved complaining about Natalie Portman’s speech, in which she thanked her choreographer fiance, Benjamin Millepied, for their soon-to-be baby. Medved took issue with this: “He didn’t give her the most wonderful gift, which would be a wedding ring! And it just seems to me that sending that kind of message is problematic.”

Huckabee responded at length, but the bit that’s seemed to set people off the most is this:

“Most single moms are very poor, uneducated, can’t get a job, and if it weren’t for government assistance, their kids would be starving to death and never have health care. And that’s the story that we’re not seeing, and it’s unfortunate that we glorify and glamorize the idea of out-of-wedlock children.”

But apparently Ms. Portman, who is 29 years old, has a high-paying job and a degree from YaleHarvard, and can surely afford to raise a child with or without being married to any man, is setting a bad example for young girls who will see her all preggers and think, “Hey, if a rich movie star like Natalie Portman can afford a baby, I can too!” Or not.

Huckabee opposes sex education and abortion, so apparently in spite of his issue with supporting the children of single mothers — a problem that will no doubt increase by a multiple of at least 10 due to the unsavory influence of Natalie Portman — he would like there to be MORE children born to mothers who are ill-equipped to be parents. Brilliant, just brilliant.

Here’s Huckabee from the Republican presidential debate in South Carolina:

“I’m pro-life because I believe life begins at conception, and I believe that we should do everything possible to protect that life because it is the centerpiece of what makes us unique as an American people. We value the life of one as if it’s the life of all …”

Well, that’s good to know, Mr. Huckabee. I hope you have a plan in place to personally financially support those lives that we should so protect. Seeing as how we value the life of one as if it’s the life of all, and all.

What’s that? You’re a Republican who doesn’t support those socialist ideas about it taking a village to raise a child? But how can we value the life of one as if it’s the life of all, and then NOT think it’s important for the ALL to have things like food to eat, a safe place to live, universal access to health care? Better not think about that one too hard.

So how do you feel about sex education, Mr. Huckabee? From

“Abstinence education provides a valuable counterweight to peer pressure and the message young people get from the popular culture encouraging casual relationships and separating sex from love, commitment and marriage. I do not believe in teaching about sex or contraception in public schools. That is the responsibility of parents.”

Then it would logically follow that it’s the responsibility of those parents to financially support the babies born out of wedlock to their sexually active teens if they fail to teach their kids about sex and birth control, right? Because what if, in spite of being taught that Abstinence is Good, instead the kids look at pregnant, 29-year-old Natalie Portman and decide to get knocked up anyhow? We value ALL life, remember? Those unaborted babies aren’t going to raise themselves, someone’s gotta do it. Gosh almighty, what a conundrum.

Young women get pregnant without benefit of marriage for a lot of reasons, Mr. Huckabee — most often because they are having sex with men (sometimes young, sometimes not) who are also not married to them at the time. They get pregnant because they are uniformed about how pregnancy happens and how not to get pregnant, when they don’t have access to good sex education — which Huckabee opposes. Sometimes they get pregnant because they have been raised by crappy, unloving parents and mistakenly believe that if they have a baby, someone will love them. Sometimes they get pregnant by immaculate conception, but that doesn’t happen too often.

So to sum up where Huckabee stands:

1. Sex outside of marriage is bad. Everyone without a wedding ring should be abstaining from sex.

2. Abstinence is good. Everyone without a wedding ring should be abstaining from sex.

3. Abortion is bad. So don’t get pregnant if you don’t want a baby. Also, everyone without a wedding ring should be abstaining from sex.

4. Sex education is bad. And remember, kids, everyone without a wedding ring should be abstaining from sex.

5. Waiting to have a baby until you’re 29 years old, have a degree from Yale, and a successful career, is also bad. Because everyone without a wedding ring should be abstaining from sex.

6. Don’t do what Natalie Portman does, kids. Follow Mike Huckabee’s advice instead: Everyone without a wedding ring should be abstaining from sex.

Got it? Good. Because Mike Huckabee values all life so much that he wants to tell you what you can and cannot do with your own uterus, young women. He values all life, but he doesn’t support having access to universal health care once you’re born to ensure you stay healthy and alive. He values all life, but he doesn’t value yours when you have to get a back alley abortion because he gets elected president in 2012 and manages to get Roe v. Wade overturned. He values all life, but not if your mother is a successful career woman who can afford to support you, but doesn’t happen to want to get married just because she got pregnant.

Now I don’t think that any girl will get pregnant because she saw Natalie Portman give her Oscar acceptance speech while unmarried and pregnant. But time and statistical data could prove me wrong on that count. It’s possible that 10 or 20 years from now in an alternative universe that we will have scientific data to support Mr. Medved and Mr. Huckabee’s assertion that Natalie Portman has set a bad example by thanking the father of her kid in her Oscar speech.

Until then, they both continue to be idiots.

P.S. If you are having sex, married or not, and you don’t want to have a baby, USE BIRTH CONTROL. Abstinence only works if you aren’t having sex. And having sex safely and in a way that fits your PERSONAL belief system, is a Good Thing.

P.P.S. If you do get pregnant and do not wish to be, you still have the legal right to get an abortion. Even if you live in Kansas.

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4 Responses to “On the Stupidity of Mike Huckabee and Michael Medved Taking Harvard-Educated, 29-Year-Old, Pregnant Natalie Portman to Task for Setting Such a Bad Example”

  1. Mr Question says:

    Wonderful synopsis/restatement of Huckabees pinheadedness.

    What I like about it is that you hold up this instance of
    Huckabee nonsense to the light, and examine it from every facet, and find that it’s sheer stupidity from whichever angle it is viewed.

    I’ll be forwarding this around – maybe to the Wyoming Congresswomen

  2. Curmudgeon says:

    Actually Kim, Natalie graduated from Harvard, Class of 2003. (This was winked at by Sorkin’s dialog in TSN.)

    “Judaism’s attitude toward premarital sex is intriguing. The Torah does not outlaw it–as it does many other types of sexual relationships–and the child of such a union is not considered a mamzer (illegitimate).”

    Huckabee is trolling at Natalie’s expense and deserves to be ignored. Medved always deserves to be ignored, period.

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It shows how out of it I was in trying to be in it, acknowledging that I was out of it to myself, and then thinking, “Okay, how do I stop being out of it? Well, I get some legitimate illogical narrative ideas” — some novel, you know?

So I decided on three writers that I might be able to option their material and get some producer, or myself as producer, and then get some writer to do a screenplay on it, and maybe make a movie.

And so the three projects were “Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep,” “Naked Lunch” and a collection of Bukowski. Which, in 1975, forget it — I mean, that was nuts. Hollywood would not touch any of that, but I was looking for something commercial, and I thought that all of these things were coming.

There would be no Blade Runner if there was no Ray Bradbury. I couldn’t find Philip K. Dick. His agent didn’t even know where he was. And so I gave up.

I was walking down the street and I ran into Bradbury — he directed a play that I was going to do as an actor, so we know each other, but he yelled “hi” — and I’d forgot who he was.

So at my girlfriend Barbara Hershey’s urging — I was with her at that moment — she said, “Talk to him! That guy really wants to talk to you,” and I said “No, fuck him,” and keep walking.

But then I did, and then I realized who it was, and I thought, “Wait, he’s in that realm, maybe he knows Philip K. Dick.” I said, “You know a guy named—” “Yeah, sure — you want his phone number?”

My friend paid my rent for a year while I wrote, because it turned out we couldn’t get a writer. My friends kept on me about, well, if you can’t get a writer, then you write.”
~ Hampton Fancher

“That was the most disappointing thing to me in how this thing was played. Is that I’m on the phone with you now, after all that’s been said, and the fundamental distinction between what James is dealing with in these other cases is not actually brought to the fore. The fundamental difference is that James Franco didn’t seek to use his position to have sex with anyone. There’s not a case of that. He wasn’t using his position or status to try to solicit a sexual favor from anyone. If he had — if that were what the accusation involved — the show would not have gone on. We would have folded up shop and we would have not completed the show. Because then it would have been the same as Harvey Weinstein, or Les Moonves, or any of these cases that are fundamental to this new paradigm. Did you not notice that? Why did you not notice that? Is that not something notable to say, journalistically? Because nobody could find the voice to say it. I’m not just being rhetorical. Why is it that you and the other critics, none of you could find the voice to say, “You know, it’s not this, it’s that”? Because — let me go on and speak further to this. If you go back to the L.A. Times piece, that’s what it lacked. That’s what they were not able to deliver. The one example in the five that involved an issue of a sexual act was between James and a woman he was dating, who he was not working with. There was no professional dynamic in any capacity.

~ David Simon