Melinda Gates’ Lost Opportunity

Written by Michael Cummings on May 6, 2019

Billionaires are an eclectic sort (e.g. Tom Steyer, Michael Bloomberg, etc.). When they speak on the record, it’s mostly rambling on issues they know little about and – most disappointing — they rarely promote the reason they’re billionaires. Melinda Gates spoke the other day on a few topics.

Philanthropist Melinda Gates is calling on religious and political leaders to embrace the role that birth control can play in helping lift families out of poverty.

“No country in the last 50 years has escaped poverty without making sure that women have access, voluntary access, to contraceptives,” the co-chair of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation told CNBC’s Becky Quick in an interview that aired Wednesday on “Squawk Box.”

“What allowed women to go into the workforce in droves? It was the advent of The Pill. When women can choose to [sic] time and space the births of their babies, we know from great research … that families are healthier, children are better educated, and families are wealthier,” said Gates, who has a new book out, “The Moment of Lift: How Empowering Women Changes the World.”

However, Gates said she has noticed that contraceptives are becoming less available in developing countries and in the United States. “I am incredibly frustrated and disappointed to see that systematically access to contraceptives being rolled back in this country. And the people that it has the most effect for are single moms living in not great circumstances, in low income neighborhoods.” Gates, who grew up Catholic, blames religious and political leaders for the rollback.

If you grow up Catholic, while you may not agree with it, you should at least know why the Church opposes contraception beyond NFP (Natural Family Planning) – by that I mean IUDs, the pill, etc. Two, main reasons: First, many contraceptives are abortifacients, meaning they don’t prevent conception but end pregnancy after conception. Since there is no life without conception, life must begin at conception, and it’s immoral to end a life once conceived. We pro-lifers can’t “yeah but” our way out of this.

The second reason the Church opposes contraceptives is we are supposed to be fruitful. There are entire treatises devoted to why you would want a big family so it’s enough to say big families are usually religious and happy. Aside from that, you can’t have much of a church if you don’t have lots of people in it.

Let’s hear about the Gates’ home life.

Melinda Gates, who has two daughters and a son with husband, Bill, also reflected on her role as a mother and wife, and how the work-life balance evolved in her family.

“I don’t think either of us when we entered the marriage really questioned, either one of us, what our roles would be. And clearly, he’s running Microsoft and he has a huge job.

But I think even what I expected of myself, we didn’t stop and talk about it. So it wasn’t until well into the marriage that I realized how much I was doing at home,” she said.

At one point, she said, she turned to her husband, saying, ”‘Hey, I want to work, too. I enjoy working. And if I’m going to be able to do that, you need to take on more work.’”

Bill Gates then stepped up his role in the home, she said, telling a story about how he drove his daughter to kindergarten that was far from their house two days per week. She said his actions inspired other moms to get their husbands involved with the argument that ”‘if Bill Gates can do it, you can do it.’”

Yes, because not a single husband in their circle of friends ever participates in busing his children to school and outside activities. Hell no, that’s the wifey’s job. Anyone else tired of this angry, straw-man argument?

Onto the next gem. Do I sense a #MeToo red flag?

On New Year’s Day 1994, Bill and Melinda were married after an office romance at Microsoft where Melinda worked from 1987 to 1996. About 25 years later, the couple is worth nearly $100 billion and rank No. 2 on the Forbes’ list of the world’s most wealthy people.

And here, sadly, is the piece de resistance:

In the interview, she also said capitalism needs work, but it beats socialism and the U.S. is ‘lucky’ to have it.

Capitalism needs work? Like what, more taxes? More regulation? Indeed, Mrs. Gates, the entire world is lucky to have the most moral system ever conceived by man to expand freedom and raise the most people out of poverty. Please do better at promoting it.

Friends, make me this promise: If I ever earn billions, don’t ask for my opinion.

Michael Cummings
Michael A. Cummings has a Bachelors in Business Management from St. John's University in Collegeville, MN, and a Masters in Rhetoric & Composition from Northern Arizona University. He has worked as a department store Loss Prevention Officer, bank auditor, textbook store manager, Chinese food delivery man, and technology salesman. Cummings wrote position pieces for the 2010 Trevor Drown for US Senate (AR) and 2012 Joe Coors for Congress (CO) campaigns.