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Equal rights lawsuit - for men?

Old 03-09-06, 02:27 PM
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Equal rights lawsuit - for men?

I hope this does get a national debate going!


http://www.newsmax.com/archives/ic/2...050.shtml?s=ic

Suit Cites Men's Version of Roe v. Wade


Contending that women have more options than they do in the event of an unintended pregnancy, men's rights activists are mounting a long shot legal campaign aimed at giving them the chance to opt out of financial responsibility for raising a child.


The National Center for Men has prepared a lawsuit - nicknamed Roe v. Wade for Men - to be filed Thursday in U.S. District Court in Michigan on behalf of a 25-year-old computer programmer ordered to pay child support for his ex-girlfriend's daughter.

The suit addresses the issue of male reproductive rights, contending that lack of such rights violates the U.S. Constitution's equal protection clause.


The gist of the argument: If a pregnant woman can choose among abortion, adoption or raising a child, a man involved in an unintended pregnancy should have the choice of declining the financial responsibilities of fatherhood. The activists involved hope to spark discussion even if they lose.

"There's such a spectrum of choice that women have - it's her body, her pregnancy and she has the ultimate right to make decisions," said Mel Feit, director of the men's center. "I'm trying to find a way for a man also to have some say over decisions that affect his life profoundly."

Feit's organization has been trying since the early 1990s to pursue such a lawsuit, and finally found a suitable plaintiff in Matt Dubay of Saginaw, Mich.

Dubay says he has been ordered to pay $500 a month in child support for a girl born last year to his ex-girlfriend. He contends that the woman knew he didn't want to have a child with her and assured him repeatedly that - because of a physical condition - she could not get pregnant.

Dubay is braced for the lawsuit to fail.

"What I expect to hear (from the court) is that the way things are is not really fair, but that's the way it is," he said in a telephone interview. "Just to create awareness would be enough, to at least get a debate started."

State courts have ruled in the past that any inequity experienced by men like Dubay is outweighed by society's interest in ensuring that children get financial support from two parents. Melanie Jacobs, a Michigan State University law professor, said the federal court might rule similarly in Dubay's case.

"The courts are trying to say it may not be so fair that this gentleman has to support a child he didn't want, but it's less fair to say society has to pay the support," she said.

Feit, however, says a fatherhood opt-out wouldn't necessarily impose higher costs on society or the mother. A woman who balked at abortion but felt she couldn't afford to raise a child could put the baby up for adoption, he said.

Jennifer Brown of the women's rights advocacy group Legal Momentum objected to the men's center comparing Dubay's lawsuit to Roe v. Wade, the 1973 Supreme Court ruling establishing a woman's right to have an abortion.

"Roe is based on an extreme intrusion by the government - literally to force a woman to continue a pregnancy she doesn't want," Brown said. "There's nothing equivalent for men. They have the same ability as women to use contraception, to get sterilized."

Feit counters that the suit's reference to abortion rights is apt.

"Roe says a woman can choose to have intimacy and still have control over subsequent consequences," he said. "No one has ever asked a federal court if that means men should have some similar say."

"The problem is this is so politically incorrect," Feit added. "The public is still dealing with the pre-Roe ethic when it comes to men, that if a man fathers a child, he should accept responsibility."

Feit doesn't advocate an unlimited fatherhood opt-out; he proposes a brief period in which a man, after learning of an unintended pregnancy, could decline parental responsibilities if the relationship was one in which neither partner had desired a child.

"If the woman changes her mind and wants the child, she should be responsible," Feit said. "If she can't take care of the child, adoption is a good alternative."

The president of the National Organization for Women, Kim Gandy, acknowledged that disputes over unintended pregnancies can be complex and bitter.

"None of these are easy questions," said Gandy, a former prosecutor. "But most courts say it's not about what he did or didn't do or what she did or didn't do. It's about the rights of the child."

2006 Associated Press.

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Maybe someday in the future, anyone having sex outside of marriage is going to want to have a contract first!
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Old 03-09-06, 02:31 PM
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if he really didn't want to have kids, he should have used a condom. this guy sounds like he still thinks he is in nursery school.
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Old 03-09-06, 02:32 PM
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Another older article on the subject:
http://nepenthes.lycaeum.org/Misc/rrights.html


What men like Fred Hayward are upset about isn't abortion itself -- these men are pro-choice -- it's the fact that women are currently allowed to make decisions that have a great impact on men's lives unilaterally and without their input. If a pregnant woman wants to abort and the father wants to have a child, tough luck for him. And if she wants to bear the child, but the man isn't ready to be a father, well, see you in court when it comes time for child support, buster.
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Old 03-09-06, 02:33 PM
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Originally Posted by al_bundy
if he really didn't want to have kids, he should have used a condom. this guy sounds like he still thinks he is in nursery school.
And the woman should force a man to do so as well. But yet if the condom breaks, or her birth control fails - she has an out. Where does the man have such after fertilization?
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Old 03-09-06, 02:33 PM
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I hope this does get a national debate going!
No.
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Old 03-09-06, 02:45 PM
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Originally Posted by mosquitobite
And the woman should force a man to do so as well. But yet if the condom breaks, or her birth control fails - she has an out. Where does the man have such after fertilization?
unfortunately that is a limit of biology, not law
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Old 03-09-06, 03:15 PM
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Child support is law, not biology.
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Old 03-09-06, 03:25 PM
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Originally Posted by mosquitobite
And the woman should force a man to do so as well. But yet if the condom breaks, or her birth control fails - she has an out. Where does the man have such after fertilization?
I vote for signed contracts before each sexual encounter that state whether or not the the intent of the sex is to impregnate, and if so, who is responsible for the child.
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Old 03-09-06, 03:30 PM
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Originally Posted by joeblow69
I vote for signed contracts before each sexual encounter that state whether or not the the intent of the sex is to impregnate, and if so, who is responsible for the child.

I have a notary on retainer who follows me around for this very reason.
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Old 03-09-06, 03:39 PM
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It's about time.
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Old 03-09-06, 03:42 PM
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For some strange reason I thought this was silly and my wife thought it was a good idea.

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Old 03-09-06, 03:46 PM
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The problem is that Roe was not decided on equal protection grounds. Now Casey?.....there's a smidge of EP in there.

Last edited by Red Dog; 03-09-06 at 03:48 PM.
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Old 03-09-06, 03:54 PM
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Originally Posted by Red Dog
The problem is that Roe was not decided on equal protection grounds. Now Casey?.....there's a smidge of EP in there.

But can something be found UNconstitutional on these grounds?
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Old 03-09-06, 03:55 PM
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Originally Posted by Palaver
For some strange reason I thought this was silly and my wife thought it was a good idea.

Smart woman!
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Old 03-09-06, 03:58 PM
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is there another site other than "newsmax" that is reporting this?
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Old 03-09-06, 04:01 PM
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Originally Posted by mosquitobite
But can something be found UNconstitutional on these grounds?

Don't know what you mean.

The point is that this guy has no shot because Roe and Casey have little to no equal protection precedent.
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Old 03-09-06, 04:04 PM
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Originally Posted by mosquitobite
Smart woman!
No arguments here.
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Old 03-09-06, 06:04 PM
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I have argued this for years. There is extreme inequity to say the man has no right to whether or not the woman will keep the child, but then give him liability if she chooses to. I can see the argument that it is in society's interest, but quite frankly, there ought to be a $1 condom cost or something so that the people who take the risks help pay the burden, rather than allow gross inequity to rule.
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Old 03-09-06, 06:11 PM
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Originally Posted by dick_grayson
is there another site other than "newsmax" that is reporting this?
Why, do you believe that the lawsuit does not exist?
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Old 03-09-06, 06:12 PM
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BTW, even though men are legally shit on, I hope the guy loses...I dont want an abortion-like option for men...I want BOTH men and women to accept responsibility for getting pregnant.
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Old 03-09-06, 06:15 PM
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Originally Posted by Tommy Ceez
Why, do you believe that the lawsuit does not exist?
it's not that. it was more to the notion that this will generate a "national debate"
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Old 03-09-06, 07:17 PM
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no matter what the legal standing of abortion turns out to be, women will always be able to get them, get some drugs or whatever to end their pregnancy without any input from the man. This is a fact of biology and modern science. if a woman decides to keep the child, than it is in society's best interest for the man to support it financially. And no court will ever support a law requiring a woman to submit to any medical procedure just because a man wants her to.


if a man doesn't want to risk a child he is free to use condoms, spermicide, require the woman to use birth control before sleeping with her, or any combination of the above that can reduce the risk of pregnancy by 99.999%.
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Old 03-09-06, 08:15 PM
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Originally Posted by al_bundy
if he really didn't want to have kids, he should have used a condom. this guy sounds like he still thinks he is in nursery school.
That's what I say to women who want abortions.
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Old 03-09-06, 11:08 PM
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Originally Posted by al_bundy
if a man doesn't want to risk a child he is free to use condoms, spermicide, require the woman to use birth control before sleeping with her, or any combination of the above that can reduce the risk of pregnancy by 99.999%.
Personally, it seems more logical to decide that if the man has no say in whether or not the child should be brought to term, aborted, or put up for adoption, he should also not be given the financial responsibility in the matter.
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Old 03-10-06, 03:14 AM
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the woman knew he didn't want to have a child with her and assured him repeatedly that - because of a physical condition - she could not get pregnant.

Men use that lie all the time. "I had the mumps when I was 7! There's no way I can get you pregnant! I swear it's true! Trust me!"
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