The Mix

No "Roe v. Wade for Men"

Turns out men don't have a "right to procreate," although they do have a right to prevent procreation.
Matthew Dubay thought that he shouldn't have to pay child support because he was under the impression, when he had unprotected sex with a woman, that she couldn't get pregnant. Turns out, despite what she said, she could. Dubay felt so aggrieved that not only did he refuse to pay child support, but he filed a lawsuit to declare Michigan's paternity law unconstitutional. He called his lawsuit "Roe v. Wade for Men," which is particularly dumb, because Roe v. Wade, what's left of it, actually benefits men, and society as a whole, just as much as it benefits women.

Last week, a Federal judge dismissed his lawsuit.

Dubay had argued that men "have a right to procreate" and a "right not to procreate."

Well, no. A right to procreate would basically be a right to rape. No one, man or woman, has an innate "right" to procreate.

Do people have a right not to procreate? Sure, as the many childfree will be happy to tell you. Roger at Blogging Baby puts it well: "No man should be forced to have sex at all, nor should they be forced to have sex without protection. What Mr. Dubay fails to realize is that he has -- and, more importantly, had -- the right to avoid procreation. He failed, unfortunately, to exercise that right when he had sex without wearing a condom. Because he did not take steps to prevent the pregnancy, he is fully responsible for it."
Rachel Neumann is Rights & Liberties Editor at AlterNet.
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