As a woman who advocates for men’s rights I am often asked why I choose to fight for a cause that “only benefits men”. To this I always give the same response: “when men have equal rights, everyone in society benefits”. This response tends to draw looks of confusion and baffled expressions.
People have a hard time understanding that equality not only benefits those seeking to be equal, but the whole of society as well.
I know there are many areas of inequality when we are discussing men and their rights, but for this article I would like to focus on two areas of inequality concerning men that I feel are most important at this point and time and how, if these areas were made equal to the rights that women currently have, society would benefit from them.
The two areas I would like to discuss are the abdication of parental rights, also known as legal paternal surrender, and child support.
Currently women are the only ones who are legally permitted to decide whether or not they wish to become a parent. They have many options at their disposal such as legal abortion, adoption, and even legal abandonment should they become pregnant and decide that they do not wish to become a mother. Men however do not have any legal rights when it comes to becoming a father. They are forced to go along with the woman’s decision no matter what. She is the one who decides his fate. And once her decision is made to have the child, the man is forced to provide for that child, even if he never wanted it, and even if he actively took measures to prevent the pregnancy.
But what if men were allowed to opt out of being a father? What if men were allowed to abdicate their parental rights via legal paternal surrender?
If legal paternal surrender were allowed many women would have to stop and think long and hard about how they were going to raise their child on their own with no financial support from a father. If he abdicates his parental responsibility he would then not be forced to pay out child support for a child he never wanted. She would have to be the sole provider for that child. She could no longer rely on someone else’s financial assistance. She would have to own her decision and be 100% sure that she is prepared to raise a child on her own.
This also benefits the child immensely. Children would no longer be used as pawns in an attempt at financial gain by mothers. Women would have to want to and be able to be mothers. Bottom line – they could no longer have children for purely financial gain.
This would likely result in more mothers who would be more dedicated to their children, more likely to raise them in a loving environment, and be more committed to providing them with the best life possible. Children would be less likely to be neglected or abused by their mothers which would in turn allow them to grow up with a healthy self-esteem, solid work ethic, and less chance of falling into poverty or crime.
When you enable women to have children for financial gain in the form of child support, for control over a man, or any misguided reason other than the real desire to be a self-sufficient mother, no one benefits, least of all the children who are seen as objects instead of individuals with rights and needs of their own.
Allowing men to abdicate their parental responsibilities, via legal paternal surrender, would put an end to this cycle of abuse. And it is abuse. Women abuse the system, the men, and their children by being allowed to game the system without being challenged.
The current system removes personal responsibility and accountability from women which allows them to remain dependent on others rather than themselves to provide for their children.
This lack of responsibility and accountability is insulting to all women, and enables women to basically remain toddlers throughout their lives, and we all know that toddlers cannot care for children properly.