Re: Responsibility for children

From: Technotranscendence (
Date: Mon Aug 14 2000 - 00:27:06 MDT

On Sunday, August 13, 2000 7:04 PM Zero Powers
> Being a hetero man (and one who was once falsely accused of fathering a
> child out of wedlock), your comments strike a chord with me. However, I
> think the current state of affairs is the lesser of two evils. If men
> able to say "OK, I fathered this child, but I want nothing to do with it,
> and refuse to financially support it," I think that would impose an
> unconscionable hardship upon single mothers and fatherless kids.

I think a bigger problem would be proving that someone really has no
responsibility here.

Also, I think there's an implication in most heterosexual sexual encounters
that the goal is pleasure or affection -- not reproduction. So, isn't there
an implied contract here?

If society were so disposed as to side with Mark here -- making it totally
the mother's responsibility -- do you really think that women would just
produce more fatherless children? Or would the incentive be either to
abstain, use birth control (either partner), or practice sex which is less
likely or unlikely to lead to pregnacy (such as oral sex)?

That said, I don't think too many women just squeeze out babies and assume
the father will take care of them. I did work with one, however, who got
pregnant quite frequently, then would get abortions, and repeat the same
thing again after recovering. (I don't know if her strategy was just to
live carefree without birth control or if she was just trying to hook a guy,
then when the guy didn't want to get hooked, terminated the pregnancy.)

> No matter
> what, its not the kids fault and the kid deserves to be provided for.

I agree here, but I think the question, who should be held accountable?

> If
> not by his dad, then by the state, which vicariously makes *me* (as a tax
> payer) financially responsible for his kid. Thanks but no thanks.

Get rid of tax funding of this stuff and you won't be a vicarious father.
Notably, when welfare in NJ no longer paid extra for more children, the
birth rate of welfare mothers went down.


Daniel Ust

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