When you hear the words “Amazon Mom,” what do you think of? When I hear Amazon Mom, an image comes to mind of a large and beautiful woman from an 80s B movie who is hell-bent on conquering crime in Los Angeles, along with her skinny and more fashionable side-kick Prime. After beating some crime lord to a bloody pulp, she would deliver her catchphrase, “you just got reduced by 20%.” (Obviously, as a kid, I watched USA Up All Night after my parents went to bed.) When I hear Amazon Mom, I am not pondering deals on diapers and other baby needs.
Why am I talking about Amazon Mom today?
From the time that I was a child, I heard men being told over and over again to step up their involvement in the home. Billboards, articles, and commercials continue to ask the same thing of men. And we have. We have stepped up in big ways. We coach the kids’ teams, attend parent-teacher conferences, cook, clean, and do the grocery shopping. In fact, according to Consumer Reports, 52% of dads say they do the primary grocery shopping. Yes, I realize that we “dads” should have been doing this since we first began etching our stories on cave walls. But here we are, doing it now.
Over 10 years ago, my wife and I made the decision that I would stay home with our kids. With that decision, I became responsible for taking care of the home. Which means that I do almost all of the grocery shopping. We have three kids and over the years I’ve purchased boxes and boxes of diapers, along with clothes, toys, books, and many other baby needs. And with baby number 4 coming soon, I’m wishing that I had bought stock in a diaper company long ago. But even though dads are a growing consumer group for baby and kids items, Amazon persists in calling its family rewards program “Amazon Mom.”
I am a part of 3 groups of men that are increasing in numbers. They are the At-Home Dad Network, City Dads, and I’m part of a huge Facebook group of Dad Bloggers. These guys, like me, take care of the shopping needs of the home. And we feel that more companies should take Today Parents lead and move away from “Mom” centric titles and switch to a more family inclusive title.
Oren Miller, the leader of the Facebook Dad Blogger page recently passed away from a heroic battle against cancer. Before he left us, Oren set his sights on Amazon Mom in hopes of persuading them to switch from Amazon Mom to Amazon Family. And here’s the thing – Amazon already calls its program Amazon Family in several other countries, so it’s not like it would have been a big leap for the company. Amazon did not oblige. So we, the dad bloggers that followed Oren and called him “friend,” are picking up where he left off.
Amazon, it is time to change Amazon Mom to Amazon Family!
Why is this so important?
I get that many people may read our demand and believe that it is a stupid and petty fight. So let me explain why it is important – it goes far beyond political correctness. Buying products and taking care of the home is not a woman’s job. It is the whole family’s job. To imply that buying baby items is a woman’s job is insulting for women and men alike. Women have been fighting for equal rights in the workplace for a long time. Titles like “Amazon Mom,” suggest that the rightful place for a woman is in the home… as a mom and nothing else. And for dads, it is saying that men don’t have a say in what is purchased for their homes. The large groups of men that I am a part of are supporting their wives in their careers and taking care of their homes. We have a say. And don’t get me started about gay dads. Switching to Amazon Family would be including them as well.
Let me take this little space to remind people that I am not anti-mom. I had an amazing mom and she was a great role model for me. My wife is also a great mom and has helped me to become a better parent. Without these two moms in my life, I wouldn’t just be a bad dad, I would be lousy person. So I don’t want you to get the wrong impression. And it angers me that women in authority make 35% less than their male counterparts and women in general make 77% of what men make. I wish that wasn’t the case and I hope someday that there will be equal pay. (Of course, a part of achieving equal pay is making sure men step up to take an active role in parenting and home responsibilities.) I have written about that before, so I think I have earned the right to say that I want to buy something from a site that is not so “mom” focused.
So please, sign the petition asking Amazon to change Amazon Mom to Amazon Family. And we dad bloggers can go on about our usual business taking on domestic violence, paid parental leave, and equal employment opportunities for women.