Quote from dinohip51 Let's try an exercise, anyone game?
Okay, just pretend a major web provider and news outlet published an article in the Sports section with a headline saying, HIGH-FIVE TO SUPERDAD: "I PUNCHED A HOLE IN HER DIAPHRAGM AND I'D DO IT AGAIN" , and quoting our hero at multi-paragraph length on how the little gal just didn't really know what she wanted, and once she could just hold that baby she got over her, being female and all, weakness and some silly girlish notion that she could live as she chose. In fact, the poor ignorant thing actually left him for a year because she didn't want to get pregnant, but (of course, a guy can promise a girl anything, and should if it gets her back where she belongs) after he assured her it was okay if they didn't have a child together, he talked it over in the steam room at the club with a buddy who was like, "dude, just take a pin and put a tiny little hole in that fucker. She'll never know what hit her..."
It may be tough, but let's just play it out. Anyone? Anyone?
Updated 1st-August-2012 at 03:07 PM by Rof L Mao Esq (change title)
In the massive and complex debate over gender roles there are no easy answers. Often it is tempting to fall back on historic stereotypes about men's and women's "places", and do no more than call on a return to some situation that we may have never actually experienced, or may well never have existed at all. Feminists commonly refer to a "patriarchy" as a sort of long-term historic condition where women had no opportunity to live in a manner of their own choosing. This may or may not be true of different cultures and time periods; it is difficult to know, as the intellectual and entertainment content that tells us what we think we know about history has largely been produced during the same era as feminism's rise to prominence, and also has largely been underwritten by advertisers and government programs, each having their own agenda in presenting images to us.
There is no point in arguing the plight of women in some peasant village in the fifteenth century, or countering it with the suffering of men pressed into the British navy in the seventeenth. Either of these accounts may be true, but so what? The reality of today, and tomorrow for our children's sake, is what we need to be arguing about. There are inescapable truths that anti-misogynists and anti-misandrists alike would just as soon avoid, such as the advent of labor-saving appliances invented by men giving women the luxury of rebellion, or the economic necessity of two incomes per household putting men in a more equalized position regarding time management when raising a family. Again, so what? We cannot argue away history and correct where we are now by preaching against how it got this way.
Women work. Men attend childbirth and change diapers. Women run for office and influence policy. Men lose touch with mechanical and natural skills that once defined us more clearly. It just is this way, because it is. What we have to decide is, as men, where and how do we find a position to occupy in life and the home that sees us, along with women and children, treated justly? If the men's rights phenomenon (I dislike "movement" for a number of reasons) has any purpose or any hope of achieving it, it has to be focused on what goes on now, and what kind of roles we prepare for our children of both sexes to inherit.
Personally, I like being a homemaker. Just now I don't play that role exclusively, as I have a domestic situation where each of the parents at home shares sort of loosely the various chores required. I tend to mow and repair and construct more, but it doesn't mean that as a man I refuse to do dishes or laundry. My spouse does most of the cleaning (woe to the man who messes with her Kirby), but not exclusively or because that is how I enslave her. She makes more money than I do, and I never question how she manages it because I am not much good at that, and we always seem to have enough. When something needs to be bought, I go to her not because she has trumped my place as a man but as the Head of Engineering goes to the Chief Financial Officer, in equality (I know y'all hate that word) and respect.
My gal is a self-described feminist, and much of what she ponders about gender roles she discusses with me, and I share insights with her about the role of advertising and political pandering in creating rigid positions for men and women both for their own interests instead of ours, and often (as a father and stepfather of three girls, one of whom is entering med school soon), I find myself taking the feminist position about how opportunity for young women must be non-discriminatory.
Ultimately, men are men and women are women, and housework and hairstyles are never going to change that. If history or family necessity call for women to be more professional and men more domestic, so be it. Each can accomplish these things in a way that is shamelessly feminine or masculine, and the whole point of freedom for anyone is that we get to determine what roles we play, and how. I don't want a patriarchal culture any more than a matriarchal one because it is polarizing and unjust, and limits the contributions and the enjoyment of liberty both genders deserve.
I began my dialogue on this site by suggesting that fathers with daughters need to be very circumspect in all this talk about injustice toward men, not to say it doesn't exist at all. In fact, specifically with the issue of mothers abandoning marriages and abducting children, and the courts' endorsement of these felonious acts, there are certainly things that are way, way out of balance. Every woman you know could name some pet issues too.
But, unless we are prepared for a world where women live in one camp and men in another, and reproduction is carried out ritually by treaty and represents the only interaction between adults of opposite gender, we have to look at each other first as brothers
The following are quotes from the January 2010 Supreme Court ruling on Citizens United v Federal Election Commission: If the First Amendment has any force, it prohibits Congress from fining or jailing citizens, or associations of citizens, for simply engaging in political speech. All speakers, including individuals and the media, use money amassed from the economic marketplace to fund their speech. The First Amendment protects the resulting speech.
When Government seeks to use its full power, including the criminal law, to command where a person may get his or her information or what distrusted source he or she may not hear, it uses censorship to control thought. This is unlawful. The First Amendment confirms the freedom to think for ourselves.
(Source: supremecourt.gov) Though the case before the court was regarding political financing and the use of mass media, the corollary outcome was the high court for the first time in its history equating money and financial disclosure with speech. This logic creates a vast opening for dissenters toward both child support laws and income taxation, as it defines financial activity as being in the realm of freedom of expression and its protection under the First Amendment. My argument here may be hard to follow, but the notion is that in the case of a child support order, one is expected not only to make a payment to a government agency, which the Court has held as being speech, but to disclose personal information to that agency about where one lives and earns one's money, which is also speech. If one believes that these items are none of government's business, refusing to disclose them is political speech, and protected under the First Amendment.
As to income taxation (another method, by the way, of controlling divorced fathers and men in general), my argument for decades has been that being required to disclose and submit personal information to government, along with money (which the Court has now equated with free speech), violates one's right not to speak, which is just another form of expression. When one says to government by not submitting tax forms (speech) or payments (also speech): "this information is none of your business", one is simply exercising one's freedom of expression. The Citizens United ruling by its own construct says government may not prevent this.
Give it a try. Hundreds of thousands of us refusing to have information, including money (which is speech) ordered and subpoenaed out of us just may get the attention of a system that tramples freedom of expression with impunity.
Updated 24th-April-2012 at 04:00 PM by Rof L Mao Esq
Anyone can Google the proposed Equal Rights Amendment to the US Constitution, and quickly conclude that as a political device its promotion as an idea has been a feminist-dominated initiative all along.
The amendment fell short of ratification by all the states and currently lies in limbo, a souvenir ideogram of another time. But, guys, READ the thing: Section 1. Equality of rights under the law shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of sex. Section 2. The Congress shall have the power to enforce, by appropriate legislation, the provisions of this article. Section 3. This amendment shall take effect two years after the date of ratification With our rights compromised, from custody to credit to employment to education to combat to mental health to privacy, are we sure we couldn't use something like this in our front pocket? (to be continued...)
Updated 22nd-March-2012 at 09:22 PM by Rof L Mao Esq
"...any person, including a natural or foster parent, who, knowing that he or she has no privilege to do so or heedless in that regard, takes or entices any child under the age of eighteen years from the custody or care of the child's parents, guardian, or other lawful custodian or person with parental responsibilities with respect to the child commits a class 5 felony." (Colorado Revised Statutes 18-3-304)
"Equality of rights under the law shall not be denied or abridged by the
state of Colorado or any of its political subdivisions because of sex." (Colorado Constitution, Article II, §29 (1973)) With these laws on the books, my son was taken out of Colorado to a remote location in Montana by his mother and her relatives in 1998, and I did not see him again for almost two years. No law enforcement, prosecutorial or judicial action was taken in either state to my continuing complaints that this was an abduction in progress.
In subsequent custody proceedings, which it took those two years to convene, the question of his mother seizing custody by criminal means and unilateral parental decision-making with no court order empowering her to do so was never allowed as an argument. The entire proceeding was premised on the notion that of course the mother would receive sole custody (which she already had seized and held illegally for two years) and no civil attorney would even agree to take my case were I to challenge this. Fifteen years of marriage, and over a year of fathering since his planned conception, bore no weight with anyone in terms of custody determination, and I was made to apply for the job of part-time father.
Much has happened since then. I have had some good time, hard-won in the courts, with my son, who was four months old when he was taken from his home and from his father. He has had a child's-eye view of a very ugly divorce since the beginning of his life, and it is very difficult to have a sound and trusting relationship between us with the wall of hatred and accusation hanging between his parents. Now, in his early teens, we barely talk. I don't blame him, though I wish he could see things from my point of view, but I also pray he will never have to.
But a decade and a half of both our lives, and his place in my large and widespread family, have been lived in a condition created by one parent seizing a child criminally, with the law failing to act in any capacity in response, then going on to endorse and underwrite that seizure with every subsequent decision. Instead of the years of fathering this boy that I can never give back to him, years of adventures and deer hunts and road trips and talking about girls and helping him in school, we are awkward acquaintances, and I have lived as a combination of part-time long-distance dad, sometime vagrant, debtor, litigant and defendant, under-employed and aging away from a once-thriving career, but also dad and stepdad to three girls in the meantime.
Now, I'm older, wiser (I hope), better-informed and -experienced in the law, and just now I have some time on my hands and the globe at my fingertips, and I mean to do something about it, not just for me and my son but for all the fathers and sons and daughters and grandparents and relatives who languish under this intolerable and enormous injustice. Despite laws in every US state prohibiting both parental abduction and gender discrimination, the tactic of taking children from their homes and denying them their fathers without legal authority is a standard starting point for court-ordered childhoods in single-mother homes, with all the attendant personal, social and economic consequences to generations of one-parent children. It's time we made this right. Who wants to help? My current focus is to draft national legislation for a standardized procedure by law enforcement and courts immediately following a complaint of parental abduction or wrongful removal, and I invite all comments, suggestions, stories and resources you may wish to share in this good fight. (to be continued...)
Updated 22nd-March-2012 at 09:21 PM by Rof L Mao Esq