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Friday, Aug. 22, 2014

The Worst Mother Award

Posted Thursday, December 15, 2011, at 10:22 PM

(Photo)
Queen Elizabeth Tudor
It's that time of year, time for the Worst Mothers Maybe of All Times Award, at least up until now. And the two nominees are:

Queen Elizabeth the First. No disrespect to the English people or anything, but I wasn't aware of what a rapscallion the ginger-haired Queen of England was until I wacyhed the movie "Anonymous" starring Rhys Ifans as Edward de Vere, the Earl of Oxford and Vanessa Redgrave as Queen Elizabeth I.

The movie centers on an oft-heard debate in English literature, who was Shakespeare? Was he an actor, who could read but barely write and had trouble signing his name, barring that maybe he had psoriasis and eczema on the hands, or was it Earl of Oxford, Edward de Vere? The movie points to de Vere, and I agree for these reasons.

a.)Although one of the most prolific writers in the English language with 154 sonnets and 37 plays, "Shakespeare" could barely sign his name, which, barring any eczema, would be odd for someone who was so prolific in a time before typewriters and computers.
b.)Some of Shakespeare's plays were about royalty. De Vere was an earl while "Shakespeare" was an actor who didn't hobnob with that set.
c.)Some of his plays were set in foreign lands, but "Shakespeare" had never been outside of England. De Vere, on the other hand, was well-traveled.

d.)Most writers write about what they know best, themselves. "Shakespeare's" son died, but he never wrote anything about this. The son of one of his contemporaries, Ben Johnson, died, and Johnson wrote a play about it.
e.)Nowhere in the bard's will is mention made of his work and what to do with them, which is highly unusual for someone who had such a well-received oeuvre.

Alas, England's puritanical society in that era considered plays and sonnets to be the work of the devil, even though Elizabeth I often attended the theatre and thought they were a hoot. Besides, de Vere would have been labeled a heretic and lost his earldom if he took credit for writing anything other than a letter or two or his own name.

But I digress. If the movie "Anonymous is true, then a really bad mother came from that era in the form of Queen Elizabeth I. Based on what I saw, she had a spitfire temper, so it appears that she may have had bipolar disorder, as that can happen when the gene pool gets restricted. And let's face it, back then the royal gene pool was barely the size of the English Channel. They either married their second cousin twice removed, or the earl or duke or duchess of something or forget it, so they smiled through pursed lips and sucked it up to keep everything going. The results and some of their offspring have been somewhat dicey, hemophiliacs, people who make bad decisions, and in this case, at least, a mood swing disorder that was out the yin-yang. Or her truss was too tight.

Elizabeth allegedly had many affairs (extreme randiness is another sign of a mood swing disorder) and several kids with different fathers. Whilst middle-aged and way past childbearing years, and we all know what THAT can do to a woman's endocrine system, she thought that two of her sons wanted to depose her, so she ordered their heads to be cut off. It happened to one of them, but Edward de Vere saved the son he had with her and probably chalked up to the change of life because Freud hadn't been born yet and no one knew about bipolar disorder.

While what her sons may have plotted was disrespectful, if true, it's too bad she didn't sit down with them like a good mother would and talk to them calmly and rationally about what's going on. It's too bad they didn't have any child welfare agencies back then or at least some psychology books because then history might have played out differently. But she is my first choice.

My second nominee is Edda Mellas, the stepmother of formerly convicted murderess, Amanda Knox, who was paroled from an Italian prison after waging a one million dollar press campaign despite a strong circumstantial case. Most parents don't expect their children never to mess up, but the family seemed to sidestep portions of Amanda's diary containing entries about how she likes sex and drugs. Had that been me, my mother would have showed up to the precinct with a rolling pin tucked under her arm, and it wouldn't have been to make pies for the precinct, either. And that's probably why I never got in any major trouble and have a good credit rating.

But not Edda Mellas and Curt Knox. After a day where the convicted killer, Rudy Guede, said that Knox and her then-boyfriend, Rafaele Sollecito were in on it, Mellas told the press that they didn't know the real Amanda. Au contraire.

This is the type of parent who could see a video of her child making a bomb and find notebooks of directions for places to detonate it but would excuse it by saying what a keen scientific mind her child has and admire the penmanship in the books and the attention to detail.

A woman I used to work with, a mother herself, said that all women should have a little computer chip placed inside their reproductive system that only gets activated if they pass a parenting exam. That one should be on the ballots.


Comments
Showing comments in chronological order
[Show most recent comments first]

I agree with your support of Edward de Vere as the true author of the Shakespeare cannon but I think you treat Queen E a little harshly. She was after all the sovereign and had to protect her reputation as the Virgin Queen and could not publicly acknowledge any children that might have been in line for the succession for that very reason.

All of this is speculative, however, but we do know that Southampton was spared execution so, if he indeed was her son, she wasn't such a bad mother after all.

-- Posted by howard16 on Fri, Dec 16, 2011, at 12:13 AM

Please tell me you are joking because if not, you are showing your complete ignorance about history. First of all, the picture you used is not Elizabeth but her mother, Anne Boleyn. Secondly "Anonymous" is fiction. Elizabeth is famous for being called the Virgin Queen and had no children. You can't base your whole opinion on an historical character from watching a two hour Hollywood movie!

-- Posted by Suze on Fri, Dec 16, 2011, at 12:00 PM

Which idiot wrote this Elizabeth had no children and the picture is Anne Boleyn.

-- Posted by Brit-his on Fri, Dec 16, 2011, at 12:22 PM

I can't believe you actually published this! The picture is not Queen Elizabeth it's her mother Ann. Elizabeth was called the Virgin Queen, she never married or had children, I could go on and on but I will spare you the history lesson ( which I might add you are in dire need of)... my God!Is this a joke from "Are you smarter than a 5th grader?" Has society become so ignorant and lazy that Hollywood movies have replaced facts? The insults, assumptions and non-truths make this a waste of time to read.

-- Posted by AreYouReallySerious? on Fri, Dec 16, 2011, at 12:23 PM

The picture has been changed but all the moronic words are still there, I bet the person who wrote this thinks Star Wars were real and happened a long time ago.

-- Posted by Brit-his on Fri, Dec 16, 2011, at 12:24 PM

I am very glad that you now have a real picture of Elizabeth I, not her mother.

The rest of the article is risible balderdash! I really hope good money wasn't paid to the author!

If you want to publish historical commentary I suggest you contact someone who has read a book or two on the subject. Or better yet written a couple...

If you are reviewing a film its best to stick to the story, not something irrelevant you think you know about the background...

-- Posted by Ann Leonard on Fri, Dec 16, 2011, at 12:28 PM

Actually, I googled it, and although it is the official account, some sources say it is debatable. The picture, though, was of her mother, so sorry and mea culpa to that one.

-- Posted by Gail-TzipporahSaunders on Fri, Dec 16, 2011, at 12:31 PM

Official account of what?? There are tons of good non-fiction books on the subject of Elizabeth I. Read a couple. You will not find any debate on the subject of her being a mother.

-- Posted by Suze on Fri, Dec 16, 2011, at 12:38 PM

Please, please, please. GET YOUR FACTS STRAIGHT. You are in dire need of a history lesson. While "Anonymous" sounds like a great movie (I plan to see it over winter break), it is entirely fictional. Plus, I'm pretty sure it didn't show Elizabeth as a mother. She was the Virgin Queen and defended that reputation fiercely. This article is such rubbish that it made me want to cry at the education people are getting. Book recommendation of the day: "Elizabeth I" by Alison Weir.

-- Posted by serogers02 on Fri, Dec 16, 2011, at 12:50 PM

Okay, let's put this to rest. One, I never claimed to be a historian; I am only a lowly blogger with a high-speed Internet connection. Two, I did some checking, and even though Elizabeth was called the virgin queen, I also found some debate on that as well. But in the end, I am glad you are reading and commenting.

-- Posted by Gail-TzipporahSaunders on Fri, Dec 16, 2011, at 1:30 PM

Okay, let's put this to rest. One, I never claimed to be a historian; I am only a lowly blogger with a high-speed Internet connection. Two, I did some checking, and even though Elizabeth was called the "Virgin Queen," I also found some debate on that as well. But in the end, I am glad you are reading and commenting.

-- Posted by Gail-TzipporahSaunders on Fri, Dec 16, 2011, at 1:43 PM

There are theories that Elizabeth had a passel of secret illegitimate children, just as there are thousands of other inane conspiracy theories on the Internet. Not a single reputable historian, however, believes that Elizabeth had children, much "several kids with different fathers." You should really try reading a well researched biography of Elizabeth--there are many around--before posting such nonsense. Tell me, do you believe that "Braveheart" is factual also?

-- Posted by historylover on Fri, Dec 16, 2011, at 1:50 PM

This article has no factual basis. I'm not sure where you got the information, other than a fictional movie, but please do some digging.

-- Posted by lovehistory on Fri, Dec 16, 2011, at 2:13 PM

good god. This article is incredibly dumb and POORLY "researched." Also, the author's claims that she is not a historian. Yeah, thanks captain obvious. However, you ARE claiming that Elizabeth was a mother (the freaking title of his article), which is preposterous!!!!! Do you even know ANYTHING about Elizabeth? You didn't even know what she looked like. Theories are not facts. Read a freaking book already and get off the internet. Whatever happened to reporters doing research nowadays? Also, you compare one of the greatest monarchs in British history to a child murder's mother? Use some common sense and report on real events. Not a freaking movie.

-- Posted by archerkat85 on Fri, Dec 16, 2011, at 2:35 PM

Obviously this has already been said, but I cannot believe that any new site would publish an article based only on a movie, and a movie on alternative history at that. Even with a high speed internet connection, you can check wikipedia and see that historians do not believe Elizabeth had any child. And there is a big difference between Elizabeth possibly having an affair and having loads of bastards and being called the worst mother ever. Really before you post anything on a website there should be at least some amount of research...

-- Posted by goddessruling on Fri, Dec 16, 2011, at 5:14 PM

oh please oh please go back to school, her having children were rumors started by her enemies and there is absolutely no prove to them

As far as Edda Mellas, what do you expect from her? Any parent that doesn't move heaven and earth to help their child isn't worth shit!

As for worst mother award ever hear of Casey Anthony or Susan Smith?

Hell there are plenty of others, ones that you can actually prove were parents

next time please use actual historical facts instead of basing your beliefs on a very debatable hollywood movie!+

-- Posted by amydoll1477 on Fri, Dec 16, 2011, at 5:24 PM

Are you kidding? You "googled it"? And that's what you base your research on? QE1 having children would most certainly have been noticed.

Please do ACTUAL research before you post.

Someone might actually take your facetious posting as truth - please tell me that you don't blog on anything else like this.

-- Posted by junothiall on Fri, Dec 16, 2011, at 6:52 PM

It looks like you have a lot of irate readers who don't know a thing about Shakespeare or Elizabeth or the times they lived through. Chamberlain (Private Life of Elizabeth I) and Carolly Erickson (The First Elizabeth) say plenty about how the kingdom almost fell because of her rampant displays and affairs. One evidently with Edward de Vere, 17th Earl of Oxford, who fathered the royal heir Henry Wriothesley, third Earl of Southampton. And this is why the only person to whom 'Shakespeare' ever dedicated a work was the very same third Earl of Southampton.

About the worst mother, I am not too much concerned about this point. Elizabeth was mother to de Vere in the sense that after his father died he never saw his given mother, he grew up in her court, and was favored and loved by her virtually all the years they were associated. The bastard children being farmed out was not the best motherly act, but it was survival if she was to remain Virgin Queen and play rulers off against one another like boys at the dance. Probably an unanswerable question, like was it right to own slaves. Of course not but they didn't know it fully and lived under the going system.

In any case, if the righteous writers above are so concerned about historical accuracy, how is it that they have adopted the most ridiculous interpretation of a great author ever concocted? Namely, the belief that a money-lender named Gulielmus Shakspere went to London to make his pile by any means fair or foul, and somehow with his illiterate skills and crude personality came up with the supernal works of art we associate with Shakespeare?

There is an enormous amount of circumstantial and literary evidence pointing to Edward de Vere as author of the Shakespeare canon: his life is there, his writing style is there, his travels are there, his love of Italy, his relations, his enemies, his classical learnedness--everything but why his authorship was suppressed after his death and transferred to a non-entity to throw off any connection with persons high and powerful as being the greedy psychopaths they really were. This big lie has been adopted as the truth, the powers that were at the time knowing just how gullible people were--and still are. It should be to the credit of the Anonymous film that it TRIED to tell the truth. The high priests of knowledge haven't tried. The fixed game is too comfortable for anything minor like the truth.

-- Posted by William Ray on Fri, Dec 16, 2011, at 9:08 PM

Since blogs are a means for people to express themselves, regardless of the accuracy of the content, hopefully you feel fulfilled by this post -- because it's about as fictitious and misleading as anynI've read in a long time. Since your sources are apparently nothing more than Elizabethan bodice-rippers and popular movies, you may not be aware that there are a multitude of legitimate historical sources attesting to the fact that Elizabeth I never had ANY children (there would have been no way for a princess or queen to conceal such a thing in that era). Moreover, in spite of her Tudor-Boleyn temper, she was not bipolar and had excellent reasons for ordering the executions of the very few people who met that fate. Elizabeth was a brilliant intellectual and canny ruler who brought warring factions together, stopped the Inquisition in its tracks, brought England from an impoverished, backwater status to the beginnings of empire, and had the vision to see the potential of the New World. It's unlikely that the United States would exist today, much less religious freedom in the West, if Elizabeth Tudor had not reigned.

-- Posted by arizcarol on Fri, Dec 16, 2011, at 9:12 PM

@William Ray - Carolly Erickson is a Mary I apologist and more of a novelist than an historian. Her book has many inaccuracies and just about any other book on Elizabeth would be recommended. As for Russell Chamberlin's book? I can't even find it in print anywhere. That must say something. Its all just another conspiracy theory which the internet is rampant with.

-- Posted by Suze on Sat, Dec 17, 2011, at 7:10 AM

Were the reports substantial or weren't they? Was Elizabeth's First Secretary Lord Burghley in a panic for the kingdom to last or wasn't he? Did Elizabeth go "on progress" periodically and stay in seclusion in 'illness' or didn't she? You may enjoy reading the myth of smooth sailing, etc., but such has become official history for reasons of state, tradition, and personal fealty. The only conspiracy of which there is evidence is selective use of resources to conform to the manufactured myth. Unfortunately thinking from that point of view takes on an emotional pitch, as though your parents, your forebears, your love of country, your loyalty to the image of the self-made Artist-Businessman (a contradiction in personality type) were mightily offended. Retaliation seems called for, storm the rebels, O woeful day. It is all right. Human anthropology does have its unspoken laws of maintaining order and social unity. Differing is intense bad manners. But it is also so that facts and elementary logic do not disappear; towit 'Shakespeare' wrote "For truth is truth though never so old, and time cannot make that false which was once true." Not in a play, but in a letter to Robert Cecil, Lord Cranborne, in May 1603, a year and a half before Measure for Measure was staged during the Twelve Nights of Christmas. Yes, 'Shakespeare' was Edward de Vere's pseudonym, and Cecil not knowing that this phrase would find its way into a future play, did not think to cull the letter, as he did an untold number of others, which would have given away the identity of the great author. Have a nice day anyway. Maybe read 'Shakespeare Suppressed' by Katherine Chiljan since you recommended a book to me. A tour de force of ignored evidence that re-focuses the issue and era.

-- Posted by William Ray on Sat, Dec 17, 2011, at 10:59 AM

My my Teacher.

Methinks I now know why you've come to carrying your pepper-spray. Were I you, I'd never leave the house without it.

You've mentioned you used to teach English - pray, where?

I think perhaps you'd be well served in taking up the habit of daily readings posted by a friend of mine. His name is Duff, David Duff. English incidentally - just be careful should you ever comment on behalf of anthropomorphic Global Warming though - he can be persnickety. Oh, probably best be an American version of Conservative (or at least pretend).

http://duffandnonsense.typepad.com/

-- Posted by HDucker on Sat, Dec 17, 2011, at 1:30 PM

Were you I and I you, you'd know what a drag it is to read what is on your mind.

Never said a word about teaching English.

How does it feel not caring whether the most glorified figure in English literature was an early 17th century con? Elizabeth wasn't the Virgin Queen. Shakspere the Stratford money-lender never wrote one word.

It sets you up for believing the next Big Lie, whatever it is, whenever it arrives.

-- Posted by William Ray on Tue, Dec 20, 2011, at 12:06 AM

I like your style, William Ray, so long as I'm assuming that that comment wasn't meant for me but perhaps for someone else?

-- Posted by Gail-TzipporahSaunders on Tue, Dec 20, 2011, at 12:27 AM

"Were you I and I you, you'd know..."

"I'm assuming that that comment wasn't meant for me..."*

*Probably safe to assume. If you were he, he you... just about all that could be known for certain - time for a Halloween party. But isn't Halloween some months behind us?

As for, "what a drag it is to read what is on your mind" now that you're he and he you (according to specifications)... well, something of a conundrum why you'd click back to this page.

-- Posted by HDucker on Wed, Dec 21, 2011, at 9:55 AM

And that, my dear, is the beauty of the English language, or any language, for that matter.

-- Posted by Gail-TzipporahSaunders on Wed, Dec 21, 2011, at 10:39 AM

Well Teacher, AWN's platform doesn't support either alt-codes or keyboard shortcuts. So to see what I intended as my simple, single character reply... press and hold down your alt key (left of your spacebar) [numbers pad locked]

Alt key down, press in succession, 251

Sit back.

-- Posted by HDucker on Wed, Dec 21, 2011, at 11:14 AM


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Behold, I, like many others before me, come forth with a new blog. Mine, however, starts off with posts about the joys and wonders of pepper spray then branches out to other maladies as well.
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