-scale=1.0,maximum-scale=1.0" : "width=1100"' name='viewport'/> Plum Street Chili: Sexual Ethics 101

Friday, September 18, 2015

Sexual Ethics 101

An interesting discussion about Men's Reproductive Rights took place within this Diary. The point of view expressed comes up often in discussions of reproductive justice. You will find this conversation embedded in the Diary Comments, if you care to search for it.

I thought the exchange of opinions noteworthy. I reproduce it here with appropriate editing to make the conversation more clear:

Cherry:
Discuss it with the State. Not me. The State does not care about the quality of the relationship between the man and the woman. The concern is the child. The standard is that a child is entitled to the support of both progenitors.

Kestrel:
Aren't you here to discuss things? I am.
Reiterating:
The conventional wisdom appears to be that a man should have no say in whether or not a woman bears his child (that she may unilaterally decide to abort his child even if he wants the child to be born), but also that a man should be compelled to pay child support if she bears his child against his wishes.
Please explain how this is not, fundamentally, a dichotomy.

Cherry:
Men have choices.
If men want to control their own reproduction, they can do the following things:
  • Use contraception or get vasectomy.
  • Practice abstinence.
  • Screw other men.
  • Have a talk with the woman you are about to screw about what her plans are for unexpected pregnancy. If you don't like the answer, don't screw her.
Once a man has left his swimmers behind in her, all his chances to affect reproduction (choices) are gone.
That is not unfair. That is biology.

Kestrel:
I guess men should never take a woman at her word when she tells him before sex that she's on the pill or has had her tubes tied.
Good to know, thanks.

Cherry:
No, they never should.
For four reasons:
  1. Contraceptives fail.
  2. Once pregnant, a woman may decide to gestate. Pregnant for women is emotionally very different than nonpregnant.
  3. Some women are evil.
  4. And last, but not least, men (just like women) are totally responsible for their bodies and reproductive capacity.
Kestrel:
You won me over with #3. Now you know the position from which I speak.
(Not that some MEN aren't evil as well....)

I still say, however, that if a woman can decide to abort my child against my will, then conversely, if she decides to bear my child against my will, I should be able to walk into a courthouse and divest myself of all rights and responsibilities with the stroke of a pen and a seal from a notary public.

Cherry:
Thank you for pushing me to discuss this. I am in your debt. You are free to advocate your position, which is where we started. In Europe where all kinds of support exists for women and their children, your position is probably arguable with a fair chance of success.

The birth of a child, for most human beings, is a life changing and attitude changing event. Do you have children? Some men could give a shit forever. And some men who could not have given a shit fall in love when they see the face of their child.

Kestrel:
Three boys, two different mothers. Ages 23, 12, and 11.

Cherry:
So why are you fighting me on this, Dad?

Kestrel:
On principle by and large and in the main. For the rest of it, well, I'll make sure you get an advance copy of my autobiography. Autographed.

btw 12 year old is eating popcorn right now as 11 year old reloads his full auto Nerf Dart gun....that GRANDPA got him. I can be subjected to a burst at any time.

Thanks, Pop.

Cherry:
Lovely. Family love. God bless you.

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