Egotistical and uncaring: FloHum on 1960s mothers

First female councillor at the City of Perth. Awarded an OBE. Had a kiosk on the Esplanade named after her. And a tiny little park on the corner of St George’s Terrace and Mount Street.

Surely, Florence Hummerston must have been a wonderful lady. After all, look at the gentle love beaming from Cedric Baxter’s caricature above.

Let’s continue our series of excerpts from The Gap, with Auntie Flo’s observations on women who want careers. I’m sure they will be heart-warming.

Today we find so many mothers setting their children aside and going out to work because they believe it is more interesting and because it satisfies their egotistical desire for admission to society.

Okay. So Flo isn’t exactly Germaine Greer. But let’s read on, maybe she’ll soften up a bit.

The price of this, the loss of love and respect of their children is no concern.
They know they are neglected. They pretend to love the mother because they are afraid.

Quick date check. Nope. Definitely written 1962, not 1862. Anyway, Councillor Hummerston, do continue.

The argument that a mother can properly care for her children, her husband and her home and undertake a job which requires her daily absence from the home is unsound.

Do tell us why…

There is no time to cut lunches so the children go off with a few pence to spend at the tuck shop and the children’s lunch is usually chips, sweets and a bottle of fizz, as they call it.

Oh FloHum, you are so hip and up-to-date with what the young folk are saying. No wonder they all love you.

And what happens to children of those evil homes where the mother (perish the thought!) has a job?

With revenge they rejoice in their ‘day of reckoning’ and set out on a crime spree.
They are the delinquents, the problem we hear so much about.

So, if you were at school in the late 1950s or early 1960s, had a working mother and ever partook in a disgusting bottle of ‘fizz’ (as I believe the cool cats say), take a good look in the mirror. Auntie Flo did not approve of you, and there was no hope for your future.