Should Men Be Forced to Pay For Children They Didn’t Want?

Should Men Be Forced to Pay For Children They Didn’t Want?Held By Father

I’m a man who helps women understand men. Not all men. Not in every situation. But, in general, if you want to hear how honest, loyal, sensitive, successful, confident, self-aware (and self-aggrandizing) men think, this blog is a pretty good place to start.

Which is why I’m excerpting what is sure to be a controversial post that recently ran in the New York Times. It was written by Laurie Shrage, a women’s studies professor in Florida and it’s like she took the words right out of my brain. In short, while no one in the world will defend deadbeat dads who don’t support their kids after a divorce, that’s a completely different scenario than men who are forced to support a child that they never wanted to have. In her opinion – and in mine – the law should reflect this obvious difference.

“If a man accidentally conceives a child with a woman, and does not want to raise the child with her, what are his choices? Surprisingly, he has few options in the United States. He can urge her to seek an abortion, but ultimately that decision is hers to make. Should she decide to continue the pregnancy and raise the child, and should she or our government attempt to establish him as the legal father, he can be stuck with years of child support payments.”

I’ve been around long enough to know that many women have the reflexive answer that if she accidentally got pregnant, he should be on the hook for it. But that doesn’t quite hold up logically. He can’t have a say over the birth of the fetus (because it’s her body), but she can have a say about whether he supports the accidentally conceived child for the next 18 years?

“The political philosopher Elizabeth Brake has argued that our policies should give men who accidentally impregnate a woman more options, and that feminists should oppose policies that make fatherhood compulsory. In a 2005 article in the Journal of Applied Philosophy she wrote, “if women’s partial responsibility for pregnancy does not obligate them to support a fetus, then men’s partial responsibility for pregnancy does not obligate them to support a resulting child.” At most, according to Brake, men should be responsible for helping with the medical expenses and other costs of a pregnancy for which they are partly responsible.”

Continues the author, “Feminists have long held that women should not be penalized for being sexually active by taking away their options when an accidental pregnancy occurs. Do our policies now aim to punish and shame men for their sexual promiscuity? Many of my male students (in Miami where I teach), who come from low-income immigrant communities, believe that our punitive paternity policies are aimed at controlling their sexual behavior. Moreover, the asymmetrical options that men and women now have when dealing with an unplanned pregnancy set up power imbalances in their sexual relationships that my male students find hugely unfair to them. Rather than punish men (or women) for their apparent reproductive irresponsibility by coercing legal paternity (or maternity), the government has other options, such as mandatory sex education, family planning counseling, or community service.”

Is any of this ideal? Of course not. But it’s reality. No matter what we legislate, men and women are going to get drunk, hook up, forget to wear a condom, and have to deal with the consequences of unplanned pregnancies. The question is: what’s fair? Shrage seems to suggest that the current laws are anything but.

“However, just as court-ordered child support does not make sense when a woman goes to a sperm bank and obtains sperm from a donor who has not agreed to father the resulting child, it does not make sense when a woman is impregnated (accidentally or possibly by her choice) from sex with a partner who has not agreed to father a child with her. In consenting to sex, neither a man nor a woman gives consent to become a parent, just as in consenting to any activity, one does not consent to yield to all the accidental outcomes that might flow from that activity.”

As the author proves, one can be a feminist, demand equal rights, and still believe that a system that penalizes men so harshly for an innocent mistake is unjust. While you are entitled to disagree with me, please understand that my whole business is about learning to put yourself in men’s shoes and find a measure of sympathy and understanding for them. By insisting that a man pay hundreds of thousands of dollars over a lifetime for a one-night stand and a broken condom, you are not indicating that you’re considering his plight at all.

Concludes Shrage, “Policies that punish men for accidental pregnancies also punish those children who must manage a lifelong relationship with an absent but legal father. These “fathers” are not “dead-beat dads” failing to live up to responsibilities they once took on — they are men who never voluntarily took on the responsibilities of fatherhood with respect to a particular child.”

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  1. 61
    Karl T

    Lia #58,
    I’m sorry to hear about your stepfather and your daughters health issues.  You are right, those are things that nobody can control and it is entirely unfair.  I agree with you.  But, abortion is something that is controlled and defined by law.  I feel the laws should be more equal- at least give the man a say in it. 
    In your last statement “This is why the legal standard for such determination is ‘the best interests of the child’ not the ‘best interest of the parent’.”
    There is no child yet.  In fact, abortion is legal because it is scientifically accepted that to terminate a pregnancy very early on (forget the specifics) is not killing a life.  That is why it’s legal.  If it was considered killing then it would be totally against the law because murder is unlawful.  Of course, other peolple have their own beliefs about this which is totally fine.  I’m just going what the law currently interprets.  So there should be no mention of a child, unless of course the pregnancy is already planned on continuing and we are speaking about the eventual expected child.  I am talking about the abortion decision, far before that.
    #59 Scott,
    If you are replying to me then you read it all wrong.  I am not saying it should be brought to a judge to claim it was accidental.  Accident or not, either man or woman can change their mind or’s all heresay.  I am talking about just giving the man more rights and power to protest simply if he disagrees with the woman about the abortion (either person could be for it or opposed to it).  Maybe the woman still has the final power to have the last say, but perhaps stipulations will be put in place if the guy does not agree.  Maybe he pays a lesser amount and the rest covered by the state (if the child was abandoned to the state it still would cost the state money).  The one thing I would not do is force the woman to go thru 9 months of pregnancy.  But perhaps if the guy is rich he can pay to have the embryo planted in a surrogate mother. 
    I’m not saying these are firm ideas, but something to this sort.

  2. 62
    Evan Marc Katz

    I’m going to go on the record and say that every woman who thinks that a man should have to pay 18 years of child support for an accident is not doing a very good job of putting yourself in his shoes. Sex is almost ALWAYS for recreation not procreation. And without trying to assign blame (statements like “he should wear TWO condoms” came up far more than “Hmm, maybe I should use an IUD, which works 20x better than a birth control pill.”) the objective facts were stated in the original piece.

    Evidently, women have the right to have sex for pleasure, take no responsibility for birth control (he should wear a condom!), have the right to keep the baby or abort it, and have the right to insist that a man pay hundreds of thousands of dollars over the rest of his life for a baby that neither of them wanted when they had sex.

    Spin it however you like, but if you put yourself in men’s shoes, that’s not remotely fair. And statements like “life isn’t fair” isn’t a really good argument as to why it should remain unfair. I don’t believe that a man should have the right to tell a woman what to do with her body. I don’t believe that a woman should have the right to tell a man what to do with his wallet. If you fail to see the consistency and logic behind those statements, that means that you’re straining really hard to justify something that’s patently unfair.

    I’m trying to think of some sort of parallel. Let’s say he bought a monstrosity of a motor home – something 40 feet long with bright orange flames on the side. You hated it, you never wanted it, you fought it, but he did it any way. And let’s say that he suddenly left town and changed his identity. But under the law, you’re on the hook for it because your name was on the paperwork and he’s vanished. You can’t sell it and have to make payments of $3000/month on the thing, despite the fact that you never wanted it and you can’t afford it.

    How does it feel? Is it fair that he did something fiscally irresponsible? I mean technically, you consented to it. You were there when he bought it. You were a married couple. You did sign the paperwork. Does it seem right that you should have to pay $3000/month in perpetuity for something you never wanted – just because you were his partner? If not, you may want to give your argument another look. You may try to shoot down this parallel – “You’re comparing a baby to a motor home! How crude! They’re completely different!” – but it’s not that different. In each case, one party has to pay unwittingly for the other party’s choice. Except on one side, you’re the party paying. On the other side, you’re the party who’s being paid for. Therein lies your different take on what’s fair.

    1. 62.1
      Bill South

      “Spin it however you like, but if you put yourself in men’s shoes, that’s not remotely fair.”

      Forget the man, forget the woman, let’s discuss the child.
      Yes, there are some women out there who purposely get pregnant – they are the vast minority in this discussion (analogous to “Sex is almost ALWAYS for recreation not procreation.”; the bilogical origin of sex is not recreation, it IS procreation; the majority of accidental pregancies are just that – unplanned accidents, not some ‘scheme’ by either party).

      What is best for the child?
      We know that the number one determinant of whether you are someone living in poverty is unmarried mothers and the children of unmarried mothers.
      That is the reality of unplanned pregancies outside of an established, long term relationship.
      And that poverty is with these ‘unfair to men’ laws the way they are.
      What is best for the child is to have financial support needed in childhood.
      Of course, it takes more than $$$ to grow up to be a well adjusted, fully functional adult member of society – yet lack of $$$ is the most well documented barrier to such.
      It is naive and pollyannaish to say anyone can be a good, or even vaguely average, parent (there’s lot of data that shows many cannot).

      Saying the man should be allowed to opt out of supporting his biological child is radically different from saying laws should be more fair to men for joint custody or equal shared parenting (if the parents equally share in the time, effort and cost of raising the child, then neither pays the other).
      It is naive and pollyannaish, but if you do not want to be a parent, do not have sex (I did say naive and pollyannaish).

      I am a guy and every few years this topic is discussed in our circle of other guys (most often while playing poker).
      Only the cro-magnons of that bunch support the ‘guy should be allowed to bail’ argument.
      We are guys, we want to have sex, and most of us accept that a possible consequence of that is unexpectedly becoming a father. It sucks but it happens.
      Our discussions on viable alternatives range widely, though they all tend to circle back to two aspects:
      – perhaps we should have a set standard of support for every child, funded via
      – in conjunction with the above, perhaps there should be minimum standards for being a parent

      No one is advocating a child should not receive the financial support needed as they grow.
      What is being discussed is how best to provide that support, how do we make the system more fair for all parents of whatever gender, and how do we make the system & laws more equitable as we try to provide for the child & increase the system’s fairness.

      And now my own anecdote to add to this discussion:
      I have a friend, his girlfriend became pregnant, they did not stay together.
      Their case was overseen in a fairly balanced court and they were allowed full joint custody; i.e., each had the child half of the time, neither paid the other.
      His main goal was to save $$$, and I am sad to say it showed that was his main goal.
      I saw both my friend and his son’s mother as their son grew up – no contest as to who was the more attentive, more ‘not quality, quantity of time’ type parent (I hesitiate to say ‘more caring’, though I think my point is clear).

      I have another friend, similar situation.
      She moved to a different county and filled in that county’s court, which was a very ‘pro-single-mother’ one.
      He paid up the quazoo, had to fight tooth & nail for even reasonable visitation & shared parenting and she routinely violated the courts orders on such (which was well documented, yet the court would not hold her accountable for her violations).
      And, like the above, I saw both parents in action; again, no contest – he was clearly the ‘better parent’.

      Which situation was more fair?
      For the man, likely the first one seems more fair.
      For the child, the second one is clearly the better situation.

      It is impossible to legislate ‘good parenting’ (though there are laws against the most agregious ‘bad’ parenting).
      So for now, we have the system we have (where both biological parents are generally required to provide in some way; and yes, for the male that most often means providing more $$$).
      Is this (the current system) what is best for the child?
      Perhaps not.
      But it is almost certainly universally better than what is being proposed here.

    2. 62.2

      Nah, you let the bank have the motorhome back. 

  3. 63
    Tom T

    Child support that a non-custodial parent pays does not begin to cover the cost of raising a child. The custodial parent usually ends up paying much, much more and has to do all of the unpaid labor of raising the child. So I would take issue with the characterization that one side “pays” and the other side is “paid for.” You’re thinking about traditional marriages with a stay-at-home parent, which sounds like the situation you are in, even though you are married. You are not describing the typical situation of a single, custodial parent raising a child alone with some money coming in from a noncustodial parent.
    As a footnote to the conversation, however, the decision to be a custodial or noncustodial parent lies completely with the individual. If you conceive a child with someone, both parties have equal rights in terms of custody. So if you impregnate someone you can opt to care for the child in your home half of the time, in which case you would not pay any child support. In these situations it is usually the case that during the early years of the child’s life the father has to pay some child support to the mother because the court usually finds that the child needs to spend more time with the mother in the first few years. The amount of support paid by the custodial father during those years is small, however, and these payments go away once full custody can be assumed.   

  4. 64

    I understand why your reasoning and logic and why your parallell makes perfect sense to you
    Here is why myself I and the law disagree a motorhome is an object. Women and a child once here are not property things or objects. there is no body autonomy involved in forcing someone to do something against their wishes to do with their own bodies with an object like a motorhome. The first two are real live people the second is an inaminate object.

  5. 65

    I have actually no idea how my stance on this issue effects my ability to attract a self-respecting man. I’m actually not being facetious. I would like to know the logic behind that statement.
    I think having planned pregnancies with two stable, consenting partners is very important, especially in certain communities where the opposite is usually the case. And I am very proactive about not having children until I am married to someone who wants the same thing. However, if a man has sex with woman who is against abortion and is not protecting himself, I feel like he has to live with the consequences. I have tried very hard to see the other side of this issue (yes, I read the motor home analogy), and I can’t agree with.

  6. 66
    Karl T

    Every post you make keeps touting how the man is at fault. Why is it the man’s fault even if they didn’t use protection??  It’s EQUALLY the woman’s FAULT!!!  Why is that so tough to see??  The statements you make like men keeping their penises to themself are outlandish and ridiculous.  That’s like having a large restaurant chain that is racist against black people and simply suggesting to black people to not eat there. 
    If a guy doesn’t use a condom why the hell is the woman agreeing to have sex with him??  Why doesn’t she say no condom, no sex.  Or use a female condom.  Both are equally at fault if she get’s pregnant this way.  So why does the woman have all the say about whether to keep a pregnancy or terminate it?  She gets her cake and eats it too.  Strange how you can see that plain and simple. 
    So according to your logic the woman never loses.  She can have all the casual sex she wants and get an abortion if she ever gets pregnant.  Then if one time she wants to keep the pregnancy she can and turn some guys life upside-down.  That’s bullshit and you know it.
    And whether you are for or against abortion is kind of moot because anyone can change their mind at anytime.

  7. 67

    @ Rose #64:
    What about if the guy bought a racehorse instead of a motorhome?

  8. 68

    Karl T,
    Get a grip. I believe that both partners are equally responsible for the conception of a child. It’s both partners “fault.” But because the reality is that biological factors make it the choice of the woman to abort or not, I believe it behooves the man to be as responsible as he can be so that he doesn’t have an unwanted child. 
    Women should be protecting themselves as well. But because this post is about whether or not men should be financially responsible for an unwanted child, that’s what I was speaking to. 
    And choosing to have responsible sex or abstaining is not the same as an institutionalized form of racism. Give me a break.

    1. 68.1
      Evan Marc Katz

      @betrees – Okay, so the man used a condom and it broke. He was responsible. There was an accident. He should be on the hook for his whole life even though he did everything necessary to avoid getting pregnant during recreational sex (which is, I remind you, what everyone does until they’re married and want to conceive)? If your answer is yes, you are entitled to your opinion, but you’re not really thinking in terms of fairness to men. You’re thinking in terms of what you’d want personally.

      1. 68.1.1
        J. Tavarez

        Both the man and the woman are responsible. Both agreed to have have sex, the accident will bring responsibilities for both. If a baby is born, BOTH will have be “on the hook for their whole lives even though they did everything necessary to avoid getting pregnant during recreational sex”. If she gets full custody, he will pay some child support but she will also pay (parents with custody usually pay more for their children) and also spend her time on the child; if they agree on shared custody, they can evade child support; if he gets full custody, she will have to pay some child support and then he will be the one taking care of the child, usually spending even more money on the child and also all of his free time. It’s equal for both.

  9. 69

    “I have actually no idea how my stance on this issue effects my ability to attract a self-respecting man. I’m actually not being facetious. I would like to know the logic behind that statement.”
    Generally speaking, people that are able to see things from other people’s perspective are going to have an easier time attracting a quality partner than people who couldn’t give a flyin’ flip about seeing things from the other side.  Most men that have a spine will likely not have much tolerance for your double standard.
    “But because the reality is that biological factors make it the choice of the woman to abort or not
    Biological factors do not make it the choice of the woman to abort or not…the law does, and as Evan already pointed out, is patently unfair (and just the way you like it).

  10. 70

    Karl T # 61
    Thanks for clearing that up.  Your not saying that you have the right to impose abortion on a woman, you are saying that if an accidental pregnancy occurs and she refuses to have an abortion you should not be on the hook for the next 18 years… Right?
    Evan # 62
    I wrote that “life isn’t fair” (I do not know if anyone else did) And I did not make that statement to be glib or facetious.  It was not an argument for it to remain unfair.  I do know men who have been held financial hostage by a vindictive woman who used their child as a weapon in a power struggle.  I have known guys who have paid a very high price for a pregnancy they never intended.  I have put my self in their shoes when they told me their frustrations.  I have felt angry on their behalf and disgusted at how unfair the system can be.
    I actually CAN imagine how sick and helpless I would feel if someone else had the right to compel me to pay them money every month for years and years and every time I got a better job or worked longer hours to off set the financial burden this stranger could force me to pay MORE.  I can imagine it because I watched it happen to someone I was close to.  Every time he would make more money and start getting ahead this woman would take him back to court for more money, the fact that he worked over 80 hours a week so he could afford a home didn’t matter.  No one took into account his hourly wage, he was penalized for working his ass off.  And the the thing is that she didn’t need his money.  The geezer she cheated on him with had a home and money she just went after more money to harass him and let him know who had the power.  
    That happened years ago and it still has the power to make me sick to my stomach.  So although I am not a man it does not mean that I don’t have the ability to see and understand what that would feel like.
    I don’t believe that there will ever be a law passed stipulating that if the man doesn’t want a child that the woman will be forced to choose between having an abortion or she going it on her own financially.  Mostly because, in many cases, the government would then be on the hook for helping out financially.
    So when I wrote “life isn’t fair” I meant it.  It is not fair.  That wasn’t a “just deal with it” statement, it was a “do your best to avoid it” statement.

  11. 71

    ” I don’t believe women should have the right to tell men what to do with their wallets.”
    Reality women open their mouths and can and do say what they want,
    And men do and say what they want regaedless of what women say.
    The individua man or l women in question is not the person who gets to decide if the man pays.
    Society which includes both men and women as a wholle has played a part in deciding and getting various laws past has decided that as a man has played a part in creating a child regardless of if he wants one or not then society expects him to play a contribution in taking adult responsibilty for his own actions regardless of the fact of if it was and accident or he doesn’t want that child or want to pay in contributing finacially and providing a percentage of his money for the child. He played a part in risking creating a that child. And now has to play a part in providing for that child. Society expects him to grow up and behave like a responsible man. It’s a hard lesson. . Some lessons in life are hard Yes they may not seem fair. No amount of complaining that something isn’t fair is ever going to change reality. Actions change reality.
    Not a lot to ask of him in the grand scheme of things in my opinion considering what responsibilty the woman is taking on. He walks away pretty lightly if you ask me. Otherwise society ends up footing the bil paying the price and  taking on the responibilty for them and treat men like children. Time to man up grow up and learn from it and behave more responsibly in the future if you don’t want to risk it happening again.

  12. 72
    Karl T

    Leah #71,
    Your pretty much correct.  If a woman gets pregnant unintentionally by a man she had causal sex with, I’m saying that the man should have a right to a say in whether the woman has an abortion.  Perhaps the woman still ultimately chooses, but if the man is opposed then the childcare payments might be greatly reduced and stipulations put in place. 

  13. 73

    Karl T.
    As reality is that doesn’t happen and it takes actions to change reality, do you intend to put an action in place to help create a differnt reality?
    Or does it not really bother you that much at the end of the day?

  14. 74
    Karl T

    Of course, that’s what we’re talking about here- changing laws. 

  15. 75

    Sorry to say it, but this blog post is way off base. We are responsible for the results of our actions whether we intend them or not. If you drive drunk and hit someone, you’re not exempt from responsibility because you didn’t “mean” to do it. If you fall asleep on your keyboard and accidentally buy a car on ebay, you still have to pay for it. How is impregnating a woman any different?
    Way to set women’s rights back fifty years, too. I can’t believe anyone would suggest that a man could rightfully and legally tell a woman to have an abortion. “Hey, so that fetus I accidentally created in your womb? Yeah, you’ll need to get rid of it. ‘Cause I ain’t paying child support. It’s the law. Sorry, sweetheart.” Do people actually see logic in this?

    (EMK Notes: I didn’t say that a man could rightfully tell a woman to have an abortion, so this point is irrelevant)

  16. 76

    It is wholly irrational and immoral for the state to invent a contract where none exists. If a man doesn’t want to pay to support his children that is his choice, and the lesson learned is that the woman should have been more discriminating in who she chooses to sleep with.
    It is sad and ironic that the family courts, along with other “equality” institutions such as abortion, welfare and mandatory arrest domestic violence law, backfire, resulting in a ~42% (and rising) illegitimacy rate. The harm of this “equality” to women is immense, especially minority women.
    The risk and downside to cavorting about; being married or otherwise; is absolutely immense for a man. It is no wonder that marriage and birth rates are decreasing, and patronizing of sex workers is increasing. If people don’t like this picture, the answer is get government out of the lives of people and repeal immoral law.

    1. 76.1

      This is my point. Absent a contract between a male and a female sex partner, what a woman does with the sperms a man who she allowed to donate the sperms to her is her business, not his. After all, haven’t the feminists been insisting that whatever is inside a woman’s body is her property? 
      Only if he forced his sperms on (raped) her should he be held responsible.  

  17. 77

    What about if it was a horse Joe.
    Women and children are not horses. just like they are not inaminate objects, they are human. So the parrallel doesn’t work.
    Are you dehumanising women and putting them in the same category as an inaminate object or animal?
    I don’t want to be dehumanised like that.
    Karl T what actions are you intending to do to get this law changed
    Lizzy. I agree, feel suprised you start your post with sorry though. Why are you saying sorry?

  18. 78
    Karl T

    Hey Lizzy #76,
    Obviously you don’t give a damn about men’s rights.  What’s wrong, you don’t like the other side of the picture when we want to make men’s rights equal to women’s rights, i.e. in this topic?  Where is the woman’s responsibility in this?  How come the fate of the next 18 years is decided solely by the woman???  Why does the man have no say?  Talk about unequal rights.  You speak about the ‘big bad man’ impregnating the ‘poor innocent women’..what a bunch of hogwash.  Last I checked both parties agreed to bang each other. 
    We’re not suggesting forcing a woman to have an abortion, but we are suggesting equal say in it.  Like my example, perhaps if the man is wants to abort the pregnancy, but the woman doesn’t then maybe he ends up paying less support or even no support- under certain circumstances to be decided by a judge.  You speak of the law as if as if it’s etched in stone….we’re talking about ammending or changing the law .   If the law were etched in stone, you wouldn’t be voting for anyone today in politics. 
    If my idea gets turned into law, then women will have to look at casual sex more carefully just as men do now when they think about the possibility of getting the woman pregnant, even accidentally.  Oh, now we’re on equal ground?  How does it feel?
    It’s funny how when women have all the power over something, you fight against making it equal, but then you clearly back women’s rights in their fight for equality.  Hypocracy????

  19. 79

    At the moment Karl men already only pay a minimum amount finacially and if they don’t want to they don’t have to do anything else like have any realtionship with a chilld they don’t want or provide and othet support for them.
    How minimul woulld you like to take this?
    Do you think he should pay nothing? And walk away taking no responsibility at all for his actions?
    Thw women does not get to walk away and take no responsibilty.
    She has to face up to the responsibilty of having a surgical procedure unless she finds out quick enough to take morning after pill or other pills if avaialable.Goinfg through a pregnancy and putting her own flesh and blood up for adoption, or taking on 24/7 responsibility and being there finacailly, emotionally and practially for many years.
    Feel curious and open to hearing what you are specifically advocating here.

  20. 80

    Rose, it sounds like you’re still missing Karl’s (and Evan’s) point.  The point is, women have a choice (although in certain parts of the country it’s becoming more and more limited by religious lawmakers) as to whether or not to become mothers. Men do not have that choice.

  21. 81

    I understand Karls and Evans point Joe.
    As women have the wombs that is reality that it will always be their final choice if they continue with a pregnancy or not.
    So mens only real options are if they do not want to risk having a baby with a certain women are to minimize the risks or don’t have vaginal sex and take that risk. It is what it is. Any women a man chooses to have sex with unless he has a vesectomy does come with the risk of that he may create a baby. And no amount of complaining or saying that isn’t fair will change that reality. 

  22. 82
    Karl T

    As it stands right now the woman is the one who has no responsibility (or at least all of the control) for her actions.  She can choose an abortion if she wants to or have the baby if she prefers.  She gets off scott free while the fate of the man’s next 18 years is in her hands. 
    if the law is changed to my way then she’ll know ahead of time that if she has caual sex and gets pregnant and chooses not to have an abortion then it’s possible she may receive reduced or no child support (depending on circumstances), but she may also choose an abortion. 
    Geez, this is really falling on deaf ears…
    You seem to have this ‘womb’ thing in your head that once the man impregnates you it is 100% your baby.  That is ridiculous.  It’s in your body because that is how biology works, but it is equally the man’s potential baby.  In seahorses, the male carries the child.  Same rule would apply in my book.
    Lia, maybe you can enlighten Rose when she says the men always pay a minimal amount of child support.
    This is why I have a hard time supporting feminists.  It isn’t about equality, it’s women all for themselves.

  23. 83

    Karl. I have yet to meet any women who has got pregnant who has not taken responsibilty for that pregnancy.And have stated how women have to take responsibilty, You and I disagree I can accept that.
    Nor deaf ears disagrreeing ears, There is a difference I hear you judt do not agree for the reasons I have stated.
    Saying condesending words like Geez is just a form of passivly agressivly trying to control. It isn’t working.
    There is no baby until it is ‘viable ‘ to be one. So up until that point it is entirely up to the woman who’s body the fetus is in it is a fetus up until that point.
    Women are not seahorses. That is dehumanising women.
    I am a humanist. Every persons body man or woman belongs to them it is called body autonomy.
    I have no wish to agrue with you. Thank you for sharing your pov, it has been an enlightening experience.
    My advice to any women would be get to know how a man views women before taking the risk of sleeping with him.
    I personally would keep my distance from any man who dehumaised women by putting them in the same category as animals or inaminate objects. As I wouldn’t want to get treated in a way that dehumised me.

  24. 84
    Karl T

    The seahorse comparison was simply a comparison that if the roles were reversed I would be sticking up for women if they had no say and the man held the baby.  Yet you claim I am calling women seahorses??  Whaaaat???  I don’t even understand what that would mean, let alone whether it be good or bad.
    Rose, you’re a manipulator.  You twist my words around to mean something so absolutely ridiculous that it’s not even close to what I said.  Dehumanization??  Geez is passively aggressive?  I personally would keep my distance from any woman, such as you, who manipulates someone’s words so drastically from what they actually meant.  Your responses are erratic and bizarre.

  25. 85

    Karl, your worda appesr to be angry to me.
    I hear what you are saying about the comparsion now.
    I did not claim that you called women seahorses that is yoiu writing words which I didn’t write.
    I claimed you put women in the same category as a seahorse. Meaning I thought you were categorising women to something other than human. Which you did and you have now explained why and what you meant. Before that moment I was only able to take a guess at what you mean’t.
    Are you able to understand that? I am not you. I have different thoughts beliefs and feelings to you.
    It feels duhumanising to me as a human female to be compared to horses, motorhomes or seahorses. And have that used in an arguement to get the law changed.
    I understand why you believe  I have twisted your words.
    I do not believe that to be the case. I think what happens is that I interpret some of  your words not in the way you want them to be interpreted.
    Not sure how that makes me a manipulatot. Although I understand that is your eyes that is how you see me.

  26. 86
    Tom T

    Ah, recreational sex. Other things that are pleasurable to those who find them so: smoking, drug use, alcohol, driving, swimming, sailing, flying, skiing, roller blading, skeet shooting, running with the bulls, bungee jumping, para-sailing, scuba diving…
    That you find something “pleasurable” does not mean that you get to ignore the risks or the effects of your actions on other people. Sex is a high-risk activity with broad personal and social implications. The law treats it as such and that is not going to change. No legislature in the land is going to change parenting laws because your understanding of sex is that it is merely a pleasant activity until you get married. That is your reasoning–people have sex for all sorts of reasons, even if you don’t, and the court does not take into account at all the reason why you had sex. The court is correct on this, because no one can know, and hence no court can rule on, what motivates someone to have sex. “I was just having fun,” is usually not a strong defense.
    But let’s think about this. Here’s a hypothetical court case where a man wants to shun paternity. The first problem: How is he going to prove that he did not intend to impregnate a woman?  Recall that the burden of proof would be on him. Him: Well, I wore a condom. Lawyer: And what happened? Him: It had a hole in it (slipped off, broke, etc.). L: How did that get happen? H: She did it. L: Can you prove that? H: No. L: Did you do it yourself, perhaps, since you brought the condoms? H: No. L: Now let’s walk through this–you say you didn’t want to impregnate her, and yet you pursued her, you initiated sex, you brought the faulty condoms. Where is my client’s intent to “trap” you into parenthood here? H: She didn’t get an abortion. L: Why should she if you are the one who pursued, intiated, and didn’t use proper birth control, knowing fully what the risks of sex are. Given that casual behavior, my client would be right to think that you wanted a child since it’s highly likey that a pregnancy would result from that type of behavior eventually. H: Well, she’s the one who wanted a baby, not me. L: Did she say that? H: Well, no, but… L: You assumed that. H: Yes. L: If you don’t want a baby, why would you pursue a woman, initiate sex, and not take adequate birth control precautions when you are having sex with a woman whom you know or suspect is unwilling to terminate a pregnancy? H: I have sex for pleasure. That’s it. L: And was that high-risk sex pleasurable? H: Yes. L: Well, congratulations on your pleasure. And on your child. And good luck with those payments.

  27. 87
    Karl T

    I can make up my own supposition to fit any type of story.  Not sure why your made up story is relevant?  My take on the law would NOT have to do with the fine details.  For instance, if the guy only knew the woman for a matter of weeks then that lessen the responsibility on him.  Women would be well aware of the law so they would know that if they had sex with someone they just met they were taking a risk, unless they were ok with just getting an abortion.  Remember, women still have the abortion option here. 
    Funny how you too put all the responsibility of birth control on the man as if the woman has no responsibility.  Are you sure you’re not a woman yourself?

  28. 88

    OMG, this is beyond hilarious, I’m crying here.

  29. 89
    Evan Marc Katz

    I, for one, have lost brain cells reading the exchange between Karl T and Rose. How about we can it and move along?

  30. 90

    Feel genuinly curious here.
    And what specific action are you intending to take in order to try and get the law changed then karl? If it really is something you feel that stongly about.

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