Thursday, May 27, 2010

Condoms, pulling out, abstinence, outercourse...

What the hell am I talking about? Well, there seems to be a little bit of a squabble going on (perpetually) about men's right to choose.

Summary: single, stay-at-home dad has girlfriend. Single, stay-at-home dad doesn't want more kids, but knocks up girlfriend. She has an abortion. He knocks her up again, and even though they had previously agreed that if it happened again, she would terminate without discussion or hesitation, she changed her mind (as is her prerogative). However, she saves herself from becoming a hero in this story by not only having the baby, but suing single, stay-at-home dad for child support. Dick move. Seriously.

Anyway, Single Stay-at-home Dad has become a poster child for some men's organization who want to give men a say in whether a woman terminates or keeps a pregnancy. There are two problems with this idea, and it's not hypocritical for me, as a feminist, to tell men that they don't get abortion rights. Men don't get abortion rights because men don't get abortions. If we were all intersexed and could procreate that way, sure, if one partner wanted to keep a pregnancy and the other partner didn't, you could just go "okay, here, you have it", and then everyone would be grown-ups about it and not try to sue somebody for child support. But we don't live in that world so...

Listen guys, you already have reproductive rights. It's called pulling out. Women get birth control and abortion rights because we can't control where your semen goes. You can. Ergo, figure it the fuck out. If a man doesn't want children, and either can't be bothered or is too stupid/lazy to figure out at least one of the many ways to avoid impregnating a woman, then he's already made his choice. It's not an issue of not having sex, it's not an issue of "keep your laws off my body" either (because, let's face it, abortion laws don't affect men's bodies, they affect their checkbooks and emotional well-being).

The fact of the matter is that, for the span of human existence, men have had the say in whether a baby gets born. You can read about these things in the bible for gods' sakes -- how to cause a woman to have a miscarriage, how it's okay to punch a pregnant woman in the stomach if she's your wife and it's not your kid. Blah blah fucking blah. Welcome to the 21st century, guys. You don't get a say in what goes on in a woman's uterus anymore unless the owner of the uterus says that it's okay for you to have an opinion on the matter and she loves you enough to give a fuck about what that opinion is. Because we're an enlightened (ha) society, and once sperm meets egg, it's no longer your property or a part of your body. Period.

Speaking about the specific instance that's mentioned in the Broadsheet article, she had the right to change her mind and he had the right to walk away. It was a dick move to sue for child support, but just because someone is an asshole about something like this, doesn't mean that men suddenly have a say (again) in what happens inside a woman's body.

Now, I'm gonna say this again because it's very important:

If you're a man, and you don't want kids, figure out at least one way to avoid impregnating the woman you're having sex with. Use a condom. Pull out. Don't fuck her, or don't fuck her vagina. And if you've already gotten her pregnant once, don't make her go through another abortion. Wise up and figure it out. We can't control where your semen goes. You can. Don't act like a powerless victim when an unplanned pregnancy doesn't go the way you want it.