Male reproductive rights

Discussion in 'Archive: The Senate Floor' started by Espaldapalabras, May 19, 2010.

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  1. Cheveyo Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Oct 29, 2001
    star 5
    Wow, we seem to be all over the map on this one.

    This claim to "rights" reminds me a little too much of the "my right to discriminate is being infringed by anti-discrimination laws!" argument, which I also find absurd. My belief in a nut-shell:
    First the precepts:
    The man has a right to choose to have sex or not.
    The woman has a right to choose to have sex or not.

    The man has a right to choose the use of contraceptives pertaining to his body.
    The woman has a right to choose the use of contraceptives pertaining to her body.

    The man has a right to govern and maintain his physical & mental health/well-being.
    The woman has a right to govern and maintain her physical & mental health/well-being.

    But...
    The man DOES NOT have a right to make the woman's choice for her whether to have sex or not.
    The woman DOES NOT have a right to make the man's choice for him whether to have sex or not.

    The man DOES NOT have a right to choose the use of contraceptives pertaining to the woman's body.
    The woman DOES NOT have a right to choose the use of contraceptives pertaining to the man's body.

    The man DOES NOT have a right to govern and maintain the physical & mental health/well-being of the woman.
    The woman DOES NOT have a right to govern and maintain the physical & mental health/well-being of the man.

    Therefor...
    The man's involvement in the decision to continue with or abort a pregnancy is one of an advisory capacity only, because in the end he does not have the right to choose for another individual what happens to and within that individual's body (remembering that until much later in the pregnancy, the fetus cannot survive unaided outside the mother, thus the fetus until birth is not legally considered to be an individual).

    However, after birth...
    It is no longer a question of man's rights vs. woman's rights. It becomes a case of the child's individual rights, and the socially accepted responsibilities of each parent to care for that child however possible. When the circumstance is such that the parents are not together and the mother gives birth without the father's involvement, his responsibility is one of financial support alone.

    Personally, if the man is not of the ethical caliber to at least do that, then I'm not surprised the woman would not want him otherwise involved.
  2. Darth_Smileyface Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Apr 22, 2004
    star 2
    This thread is quickly degenerating into a male-bashing fest. Objections as to the morality or ethical standing of the individual father really aren't relevant here any more so than the same attack on a woman would be relevant to an abortion debate. Personally, I object to terms such as "deadbeat dad". Not because I don't believe there are fathers out there who fit the bill, but because I believe so many men are slapped with that label unjustly. If a man leaves his wife and children and refuses to pay child support, yes he is a deadbeat. A man who does not want children and is forced into having them is not a deadbeat. He is a man with no options. In the course of my work I have met many such men.

    We do not refer to women who have abortions as "deadbeat moms" or some other such moniker. And yes, I can appreciate that in the case of abortion there is no baby. But if a man tells a woman that he is not interested in raising a child with her, she has all the information she needs. If she decides to continue with the pregnancy then she is doing so knowing that she will be the sole benefactor for that child.

    When it comes to reproduction I believe that men should have the same rights as women. Obviously, since the woman bears the child there is really nothing that can be done if the father wants the child and the mother does not. I cannot see an equitable resolution that would not unduly impose upon the woman in that case. However, if the father does not want the child, he should have the same right to terminate his responsibility as the mother has.

    *Edit*
    Behemoth,

    You talk of the rights of the child. By definition, during a pregnancy there is no child to speak of. I propose that a man be allowed to file for a "financial abortion" only during pregnancy, preferably only in the first trimester in order to give the mother time to consider her options.

    Some have proposed that this would lead to more children being born without resources who would then become a drain on the social system. While that is possible, I believe this would cause an increase in aborted pregnancies and/or a decrease in the instance of pregnancy. If women knew that they couldn't rely on the father's support and knew that they had no recourse to compel him financially, I think we would see less women bring babies to term without the resources to provide for them. I have no data to support this, it is only a guess, but an educated guess.
  3. Valairy Scot Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Sep 16, 2005
    star 5
    Really? By and large I see posters trying to reason through something complicated and without a clear cut "right" answer-at least one acceptable to all.

    How about a modest proposaL: a man doesn't want kids, HE takes the responsibility for birth control?

    :eek: Whoops - is that male-bashing? [face_thinking]
  4. anakin_girl Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Oct 8, 2000
    star 6
    Agreed 100 percent, which is one reason why I believe someone needs to invent hormonal birth control for men. I really wonder why that hasn't happened yet, given all the other pharmaceutical innovations in the past 30 years or so.

    Or, dude, if you know you don't ever want kids, there's a nice little outpatient medical procedure that a urologist can introduce you to.

    It's not "male bashing" to say that decisions about reproduction, prior to conception, should not be entirely on the woman.
  5. Cheveyo Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Oct 29, 2001
    star 5
    I'm sorry. No. Unless a man is being raped, or his sperm are being surgically removed from him against his will, a man ALWAYS has an option. Unfortunately for most men, that option is whether or not to have sex, and if yes, whether or not to use contraception. If he selects Yes in the first set of options, he must always do so with the understanding that the biological act has a very significant consequence, and that whichever option he chooses in the second tier of choices, that initial consequence is still probable. Once he makes these choices, he is responsible. Period. I have no sympathy for men who can't keep it in their pants long enough to know who/what kind of person he's bedding down with.
  6. anakin_girl Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Oct 8, 2000
    star 6
    This. I also have no sympathy for men who "don't like" wearing condoms and/or "don't want anyone putting a knife down there" but then complain when the woman he beds with gets pregnant. Dude, exactly what did you expect?

    The men that I do have sympathy for? The men who sleep with women who lie to them about being on birth control. But at the same time, when in doubt, wrap it. If the woman you are sleeping with, protests the fact that you are wrapping it, I'd have my concerns about her honesty and intentions.
  7. Darth_Smileyface Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Apr 22, 2004
    star 2
    "How about a modest proposaL: a man doesn't want kids, HE takes the responsibility for birth control?

    Whoops - is that male-bashing?"

    That in itself isn't male-bashing. But calling them deadbeats and calling into questions the morals and ethics of men who don't "man up" so to speak, is male-bashing in my opinion. Would you hold women to the same standard? Let's revise your quote and see how that works:

    How about a modest proposaL: a WOMAN doesn't want kids, SHE takes the responsibility for birth control?

    BTW, birth control is not always effective. Both of my daughters were conceived while using birth control. Condoms have been particularly ineffective for me.

    Bottom line is women have an option available that men do not. I believe men should also have that option. Obviously others do not. Fair enough, that is their prerogative.

  8. Valairy Scot Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Sep 16, 2005
    star 5
    I have not once called men deadbeats (though some are in this context) and I agree a woman should also take responsibility for birth control. BOTH should. And yes, there are (unknown verb, ;) ) women who trick men into parenthood.

    But we're talking about ways for men to not support kids they don't want, right? Well, snip it or wrap it, or avoid it.

    100% effective no - but 99%.

    I see this discussion in two parts:

    1. How can men avoid having unwanted kids? Take responsibility.
    2. When a man finds out he's having an unwanted kid, what then are or should bis options:
    A. Birth control failed, so he did try
    B. He didn't use birth control and is now unhappy

    Bottom line for #2 - if the mother doesn't abort or give it up for abortion, she rears it because in this scenario "dad" doesn't want to be a dad. How much say should a man have when it conflicts with the mother's and what right, if any, should he have to not assume financial responsibility (and when, I believe a few here have asked)?

    Corollary to this: what right, if any, does the child have to financial support from a unwilling parent?

    I'm trying to lay out what I see as the arguments more than I am proposing the solution because I don't have all the answers here and it is a complex issue.
  9. anakin_girl Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Oct 8, 2000
    star 6
    Agreed.

    And yes, women have an option that men don't, but I really don't know how we could change that without changing biology.
  10. _Behemoth_ Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    May 22, 2010
    At the end of the day if a child is going to be born then we need to ensure, as a society, that the child is going to be cared for, fed, and clothed. Whether the child was unplanned is entirely irrelevent. Whether the biological father consented to fatherhood is entirely irrelevent. The child must be cared for. The child should not suffer because of the manner in which the child was conceived. If the biological parents can't do it, then the child must be placed in a home where others can care for it. If the father does not wish to become a parent then so be it, but the child must be financially supported. Children are precious and should never become the plaything for a debate about 'rights'. When it comes to the welfare of a child, you have no rights, only obligations.

    Smileyface, sometimes life is not fair. Is it necessarily fair that a biological father has no say in whether a pregnacy continues to delivery? No. But sometimes a sense of 'fairness' can lead to undesirable consequences, such as a generation of children born into poverty because their biological fathers were given the legal option/right of spending their money on other things. I used the term 'deadbeat' only because it was the most user friendly term I could think of - there are plenty of other labels I could have used, believe me, but they do not appear to be appropriate for this board.
  11. Darth_Smileyface Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Apr 22, 2004
    star 2
    Behemoth,

    I agree that the rights of a child are tantamount to the interests of the parents. But we are not talking about the rights of the child vs. the rights of the parent. We are talking about the rights of the fetus vs. the rights of the parents. Last I checked, the fetus didn't have any rights. In that context I don't know why we are denying men an option that women have.
  12. _Behemoth_ Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    May 22, 2010
    The point is that the fetus becomes a child if the mother decides to carry the fetus to term. The decision by the father to 'opt out' of financially supporting the child at the 'fetus' stage is clearly going to impact upon the child if it is delivered. The timing is kind of irrelevent, whether you opt out at the embryo stage or at the delivery stage, the child, if born, is going to suffer. Women have the option to decide whether to carry the fetus to term simply because it is a function of their anatomy and they carry all of the risks and burdens associated with pregnancy and child birth. Others have set this out in sufficient detail that I don't need to repeat it.

  13. Espaldapalabras Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 25, 2005
    star 5
    How significant is the difference between the 18 years of financial burden vs. the 9 months of pregnancy?
  14. Valairy Scot Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Sep 16, 2005
    star 5
    How would you answer that?

    However, mom and dad both share the 18 years of financial burden, don't (shouldn't) they?
  15. Espaldapalabras Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 25, 2005
    star 5
    No, an unmarried woman can give up the child fairly easily as a newborn, due to us not wanting her to throw it in the trash.
  16. Valairy Scot Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Sep 16, 2005
    star 5
    Sure, but if mom gives up the child, then dad doesn't face 18 years of financial responsibilty, does he?

    So doesn't your question imply that the mother keeps and raises the child, or did I miss something?
  17. Espaldapalabras Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 25, 2005
    star 5
    A man who is forced by society to take reponsibility for having consensual sex has the consequence of 18 years of financial burden. A woman who is forced to take responsiblity and not allowed an abortion would be subject to 9 months of pregnancy. All this talk of forcing men to take responsiblity could equally be turned to women and the fetus. If it is entirely the right of the woman to control whether that fetus becomes a child, then she is the only one making that choice, and is 100% responsible for it.
  18. anakin_girl Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Oct 8, 2000
    star 6
    Unless there are some rare occurrences that I don't know about, then the woman also accepts 18 years of financial responsibility for the child as well as nine months of pregnancy. In fact, the woman's financial responsibilities are usually greater than the man's if they are apart and he is paying child support.

    What about the other proposal--if a man does not want a child, he should use birth control? Either wear a condom or get a vasectomy.
  19. Espaldapalabras Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 25, 2005
    star 5
    Either wear a condom or get a vasectomy.

    And how pray tell is that not an argument against abortion? Oh wait, those same options exist for women but you don't seem too interested in forcing her to make reproductive choices based solely on her williness to use birth control or undergo surgery.

    Unless there are some rare occurrences that I don't know about, then the woman also accepts 18 years of financial responsibility for the child as well as nine months of pregnancy.

    It's called abortion. If she is not allowed an abortion, she is forced into only the nine months of pregnancy. Society says that the 9 months of pregnancy is an undue burden for the rights of the fetus. Up until the fetus is born, it has no rights. Until it is actually born, the father is not the father. If abidates his rights and responsibilites before it becomes a child, then the decision to turn the fetus into a child is entirely the mothers at that point. And since it is solely her choice, why should the responsiblity for that choice be shared?
  20. anakin_girl Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Oct 8, 2000
    star 6
    I'm pretty sure the original poster of this thread did not want to start an abortion debate, although you seem intent on making this into one.

    I'm not debating abortion here, I am addressing the following questions: What are the roles of both the man and the woman in making sure that a child is not conceived in the first place? And, can a man abdicate responsibility for his child after the child is born, assuming the mother did not choose to abort?

    The question, does the man have any input into whether a woman has an abortion? I addressed already, as did several others. It comes down to, can a man force a woman to carry a child to term against her will? Or, can a man force a woman to abort? Both answers would have to be either "yes" or "no" for consistency, and I don't see any possible way to make both answers "yes" without going back to a time when women were the property of men. I feel sorry for any man who wants his child and the woman chooses to abort, but I also don't see any way in which he can force her to carry the pregnancy to term either. The only possibility would be some sort of legal contract that both parties would have to sign, in which the man agrees to take full custody of the child after the child is born.

    As far as your other question, yes, absolutely, a woman who does not want a child should use birth control. I'm not sure how you thought I was implying otherwise. My understanding from your statements was that you believe men have the following rights: They should be able to avoid wearing condoms because they "don't like" them and they should be able to avoid vasectomies even if they never want kids because "nobody is putting a knife down there," but if they conceive a child in spite of this, they should not have to be financially responsible for the child. Is that the case? In which case, how does that argument work in reverse? "Women should not have to take birth control pills if they don't want to get fat and they should not have to use diaphragms because they reduce spontaneity, but if they get pregnant, they should be able to abort"? I personally do not believe that, and the only people who do, are beyond pro-choice, they are hard-core pro-abortion.
  21. Jedi_Keiran_Halcyon Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Dec 17, 2000
    star 6
    What's funny is that he IS the OP, but you're still absolutely right:

    :p
  22. Darth_Smileyface Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Apr 22, 2004
    star 2
    "I'm not debating abortion here, I am addressing the following questions: What are the roles of both the man and the woman in making sure that a child is not conceived in the first place? And, can a man abdicate responsibility for his child after the child is born, assuming the mother did not choose to abort?"

    Anakin's_girl:

    Problem is, neither of these questions are central to the debate of this thread. This thread is not about how to prevent a pregnancy. We know that both men and women have options in that regard. This thread is also not about abdicating responsibility after a child is born. I don't think that anyone believes that to be a good idea. This thread is about what happens after conception but before birth. Should a man have the right to cut ties to the mother and unborn fetus. I believe he should, but only within a reasonable timeframe (I have suggested up until the end of the first trimester). Espy is suggesting that 18 years of financial responsibility is a greater burden to bear than 9 months of pregnancy. I would tend to agree. And yes the mother also has to bear 18 years of financial responsibility (assuming that she doesn't rely entirely on the father and society as some women do), but that is a burden by choice, not something she has been forced into.
  23. Lowbacca_1977 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jun 28, 2006
    star 6
    I would say that the father's chance to do so should be limited, though. Either within a narrow window following finding out about the child/pregnancy, or within the first period of the pregnancy.
  24. Espaldapalabras Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 25, 2005
    star 5
    I didn't mean to start a debate on abortion, but the reason I brought it up is that you have one standard of responsiblity for sexual behavior for a woman and another for a man. In our current society, a woman can make the choice to get an abortion whenever and for whatever reason she would like.

    There is logical inconsistency with that an forcing a man to be "nothing more than the property of women" who force them to support a decision they alone had complete control over.

    Personally I do find that the needs and rights of the child and the unborn child to justify both forcing a woman (except in cases of rape, incest, and threat to life of the mother) to carry a baby for 9 months and to force men to be financially responsible for offspring, wanted or not, because you do have options regarding birth control. The current system of abortion on demand is fundamentally unfair to men, and if we can't give any rights to men or the fetus at any stage of the pregnancy, then we need to deal with the unfair system we have created that gives all the power and choice to one person.

    If you find that 9 months of pregnancy is an unfair or undue burden on women, and find that 18 years of a financial one is acceptable, that isn't something I understand.

    I don't want to debate abortion, and sorry if I gave that impression, but if in one instance you believe the rights of the individual surpass those of the fetus and society, then it seems only logically consistent to say that the responsibilities of the other individual end when he has no rights. We don't make sure women who have abortions made sure to use birth control, why subject men to a stricter standard? Yes this will most likely cause additional harm and burden to a society that must take on the responsibility. But again the answer for that is just more abortions, right?
  25. wannasee Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jan 24, 2007
    star 4
    "You shouldn't be held accountable for your actions if you don't want to be."

    True or false?

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