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February 16, 2007

Now Women Want It Both Ways On Child Support

Family law is becoming increasingly byzantine and illogical as courts struggle to reconcile age-old social problems with the new reality that women supposedly have rights (but apparently, still not responsibilities) that equal those of men. Witness this bizarre decision:

Sixteen months after his divorce, Richard Parker made a devastating discovery. A DNA test revealed that his 3-year-old son had been fathered by someone else.

Mr. Parker immediately filed a lawsuit claiming fraud by his apparently unfaithful ex-wife. He took his case all the way to the Florida Supreme Court.

Last week, the Florida justices ruled 7-0 against him. They said that Parker must continue to pay $1,200 a month in child support because he had missed the one-year postdivorce deadline for filing his lawsuit. His court-ordered payments would total more than $200,000 over 15 years to support another man's child.

"We find that the balance of policy considerations favors protecting the best interests of the child over protecting the interests of one parent defrauded by the other parent in the midst of a divorce proceeding," writes Justice Kenneth Bell for the court.

"We recognize that the former husband in this case may feel victimized," he writes. He then quotes a scholar to explain the ruling: "While some individuals are innocent victims of deceptive partners, adults are aware of the high incidence of infidelity and only they, not the children, are able to act to ensure that the biological ties they may deem essential are present."

In effect, the high court is saying it's partly Parker's fault for trusting his wife.

The Parker case illustrates an increasingly contentious debate over the rights and responsibilities of divorced fathers who have been duped and don't challenge paternity at or near the time of divorce. But it also raises fundamental questions about the nature of fatherhood and the legal responsibilities that can attach to a father-child relationship – even when that relationship is the result of fraud and deception by a wife and mother.

Most states have laws that permit courts to order men who have been deceived to continue to make child- support payments even when they have no biological connection to the child. The idea is to minimize any disruption in the life of the child. In recent years, some states have begun passing laws that give deceived dads some ways to fight back.

Parker's main crime, in this case, appears to have been not being smart enough to have hired Miss Cleo as divorce counsel.

In the area of so-called reproductive rights, the legal standard as it currently stands makes absolutely no sense. As this case clearly shows, men have no reproductive rights, even when they try to do the right thing:

As we are constantly reminded, the abortion debate is all about something called reproductive choice. Of what does this reproductive choice consist? If a man and a woman, married or unmarried, conceive a child together, both are on the hook financially to support that child until he or she is grown. But there are rules. If the woman decides to rid herself of a fetus that she does not want, but the man does, she may kill it and this is perfectly legal. If the man decides to rid herself of a fetus that he does not want (perhaps by slipping her an abortifact that does not otherwise harm her), but the woman does, this is murder and he will go to jail.

Thus, two utterly contradictory things occur at the moment of conception:

Legally, from the point of view of a woman: the fetus is a lump of tissue which may be excised at will if she subsequently regrets having conceived a child. It imposes no obligation or legal duty unless she chooses to accept it.

Legally, from the point of view of the man: the fetus is a human being which must be allowed to live, even if he subsequently regrets having conceived a child. It imposes an absolute and irrevocable legal duty, regardless of his wishes in the matter.

In other words, if you have a y chromosome you have no reproductive choice. Except, of course, to pay at least a half-share of whatever "choices" your sexual partner may make, whether you are married or single - it makes no difference. When one considers that women can have multiple orgasms (and that ours generally last longer), something tells me men are getting the short end of the stick.

Now we find that even if the woman lies, even if a child is not his, the man must pay.

The mother is the one at fault here. She broke up the marriage, and she caused the child to be in a single-parent home. Why is the court penalizing Parker for her irresponsible and immoral actions? Has she no affirmative duty to disclose the name of the real father to the court, much less seek him out and collect child support from him? This infantilizes the woman and effectively absolves her from all responsibility for her own reproductive choices while putting intrusive nanny state laws all over an innocent man's body, who did nothing to incur a lifetime financial penalty.

Perhaps someone can explain to me how this is right, because as a woman I find it not only insulting but morally indefensible.

Via ze Amazing Bashman.

Posted by Cassandra at February 16, 2007 07:12 AM

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Comments

Bizzare

Posted by: Jane at February 16, 2007 07:59 AM

And how does this square with all the men who claim to have fathered Anna Nicole Smith's child?

Posted by: Cricket at February 16, 2007 08:57 AM

Okay, let us then draw this out to the logical conclusion: Why should I have to pay taxes to support children sired by other men on other women; children who are NOT mine and whose parents claim some sort of victim status because...why? Why should the taxpayers get stuck with this crap?

Oh, it is all about choices. Things happen. This is why we teach abstinence and accountability for the persons involved, namely the egg and sperm donor.

*goes off to corner and mutters to self*

Posted by: Cricket at February 16, 2007 09:02 AM

The exact same thing happened in Massachusetts a few years back, young man found out that his girlfriends kid wasn't his ... went to court to stop child support payments and the court forced him to continue even though they acknowledged that the kid wasn't his ... again, no requirement on the mothers part to disclose the name of the real (or at least from her part suspected) father.

Posted by: Frodo at February 16, 2007 09:26 AM

Oh come on now, your bourgeois concept of justice is so outdated.

It is best to suppress your radical thoughts.

For the children.


Posted by: Geoff at February 16, 2007 09:34 AM

Here is a link to a Jeff Jacoby column about the Massachusetts case:

http://www.capmag.com/article.asp?ID=1007

Posted by: Frodo at February 16, 2007 09:49 AM

What I don't understand is further into the article they state that Florida has a law that would support this guy ... oh wait, this is the Florida Supreme Court that does what it likes regardless of what has been legislated.

Posted by: Frodo at February 16, 2007 10:11 AM

I know I have heard of multiple such cases. It makes me sick for more than one reason.

First, there is the man who now knows he is not the father, but is still required to support the child.

Next, there is a man out there who may not know he is a father, and if he did know, he might actually choose to be involved in his child's life, and possibly even to support it - what's to say the actual father isn't even more able to support this child?

Lastly, there is a child who does not know who its father is. And I can't help but think that the man who now knows he is not the father will have a strained relationship with the child. I can't help but wonder if the man required to pay child support would come to resent the child, even though the situation is not the child's fault.

Posted by: Miss Ladybug at February 16, 2007 10:36 AM

I have been saying for years that the Divorce/Family Law system in this country is seriously broken. After decades of feminist activism, the only thing you need to know when entering the courtroom is that the one with the penis is always wrong/guilty.

In the "Alice in Wonderland" world of what we call "domestic relations" in Arizona, long-standing legal concepts going back hundreds of years are turned on their heads. For example, elementary principles of contract law do not apply. Equitable principles of basic fairness do not apply.

The entire system is based on the principle of "mommy welfare" -- in other words, give the maximum amount of dollars to the woman as is possible. I do not say "humanly" possible, because I have seen a judge order a man clearing 1,500 per month to pay 3,000 in child support. Naturally, if he does not pay he is a "deadbeat dad" who will be thrown in prison. By the way, we abolished debtor's prisons when we created the Constitution in the 1700s, i.e. jailing someone for civil, monetary debts rather than for criminal activity. Not in the US divorce courts, though! In this arena, the Constitution does not apply.

All of this judicial heavy-handedness is supposedly justified because it is being done "for the children". All of the money, however, goes to mom with no controls as to whether mommy spends the cash on formula, or on a new party dress. The Courts have repeatedly rejected requests from fathers to impose some type of oversight or constructive trust to ensure the money is actually spent for the benefit of the child.

We cannot, after all, expect or impose any sort of accountability on the mother, only on the (purported) father -- or as he is commonly known -- the "walking paycheck". Likewise, even if a (purported) father is paying his child support like clockwork doesn't mean he has a right to visitation with his child.

So, let's sum up: Mothers = entitlement to gobs of money but no accountability, Fathers = No rights, except for the "right" to pay and pay and pay.

I remember some articles about a year back talking about how so many fathers do not stay involved in their divorced children's lives after the passage of time. Hmmmm. What could possibly be contributing to this problem? Anyway, I'm sure that it is best for the children after all.

Posted by: a former european at February 16, 2007 11:26 AM

So, what's being proposed here? Actually equalizing affairs between men and women, so that a man can terminate his duty to his child the way a woman can (and can even after birth -- she can drop off a baby at a 'no questions asked' shelter; she can put a child up for adoption)?

Or just making sure that it's only the biological fathers that are tasked with supporting the child?

If it's the latter, that does't address the hard question at all. Doesn't that policy still "infantilize" the woman involved -- saying she should always forever have an out from her responsibilities, whereas they should be ironclad upon the man? That a man's duties are serious and binding and legally enforcable, whereas a woman must always be left with a way out?

I think Cricket is right to say that the other option is to put this on the taxpayer, so that all of us have to pay whether we like it or not. So is the proper thing to do to:

(a) pursue equality for men and women, by freeing the man so he is likewise "infantalized" by being able to avoid taking responsibility for his choices;

(b) pursue equality for men and women by taking away the woman's freedom to choose (abortion, adoption, to give up the child -- or at least abortion, with the caveat that should she do the other two she is still financially responsible for the child until 18);

(c) accept that men and women are not and never can be equal under the law, and therefore allow women these raft of choices, but continue to bind men to provide for their children;

(d) accept that we must provide for the children regardless of our responsibility for the, through some form of socialist/taxpayer-funded enterprise?

Personally, I think (c) is the best choice, but (b) is also acceptable; (a) and (d) are wrong. I don't really care if we're all equal under the law, and can accept that men and women are different and shouldn't live under the same laws. I do have an interest in seeing that the child is provided for, without becoming a ward of the state.

I'd rather have people being treated unequally, than people being treated equally badly. It's good to make people live up to their duties; it's good to provide for the children. Is it bad to bind the man and free the woman? Only if the man and the woman are really the same; but in reproductive matters, surely even the staunchest feminist would have to agree that there is no possibility of equality.

Posted by: Grim at February 16, 2007 11:37 AM

In the case of a man who KNOWS he is not the father, the mother should be compelled to identify any and all possible fathers of the child, and then those men should be made to submit to paternity tests. Once the father is identified, he should be made to be responsible for his child. The man who is not the biological father should not be forced to support a child who is not his. If he CHOOSES to do so, he is a good man who should be praised for his selflessness.

I also agree with placing some sort of oversight on how a mother uses the child support she receives. Helping to covering rent and groceries, as well as clothing and other necessities for the child, but any maintenance of the mother should not be part of it. That's what alimony is for.

Posted by: Miss Ladybug at February 16, 2007 12:16 PM

Cass, although I entirely agree with your posting, there is something else to consider; the child. As far as the child in concerned, this man is his father. And up until the point where he found out he wasn't the 'biological' father, he believed, perhaps not, the child to be his own. He needs to love this boy and be his daddy, DNA or not. I know that your posting in about the financial aspect of it, and I do agree. But our nation doesn't need another fatherless boy out there, and sometimes we need to think of others first. My .02

Posted by: Stacy at February 16, 2007 12:26 PM

He needs to love this boy and be his daddy, DNA or not.

But the State cannot compel love, nor paternal care from someone, Stacy. Sadly, that can only be a voluntary choice on his part. Nothing prevents a man from doing the right thing in this case.

And more importantly, what of the real father? Doesn't the child have an interest in knowing who his real father is? There may be health reasons for finding that information out some day, not to mention the possibility that his real father might actually care to become a part of his life. And in any event, this particular child is way too young to have any knowledge of who his father is. A father is not a paycheck.

The only real question is what the operation of law can compel from a man who is not, in reality, the child's father. Interestingly, I would imagine paternity tests could (and have) been used to PREVENT men who weren't the child's real "father" from obtaining visitation rights, so it really makes very little sense to me to argue that the very same evidence should be used to extract a lifetime obligation for a relationship that, after all, turned out to have been based on deceit.

In answer to Grim's question, I don't see how the Court can allow a woman to be awarded paternity payments when the Court knows she is aware of who the father is. She is suing the wrong person and she is intentionally deceiving the Court, and the Court is aiding and abetting her in this fraud.

The child doesn't need to lose out - she knows who the father IS. All she need do is tell the court. You are presenting it as though the child will lose, when in fact THE CHILD HAS A FATHER - THE WOMAN AND THE COURT ARE JUST MAKING AN INNOCENT MAN PAY FOR WHAT HE DID AND LETTING HIM GET OFF SCOT FREE.

Posted by: Penelope the Sex Toy Diva at February 16, 2007 12:38 PM

After decades of feminist activism, the only thing you need to know when entering the courtroom is that the one with the penis is always wrong/guilty.

Here, sweetie! I can help you with that!

Heh...

Posted by: Loreena Bobbitt at February 16, 2007 12:41 PM

This is a truly sorry state of affairs, one which I don't think has any real happy conclusions. There are only a couple outcomes available, which both have negative consequences: a) The not-father gets his way, the child receives no more support, b) there is no justice for the not-father, and he has to pay his philandering ex-wife.

And all through this, the poor kid realizes that his mother lied to him and his 'father' really doesn't love him enough to keep paying.

As a divorced man myself, I can sympathize with the dad -- but cutting the child that was your kid up to a month ago off? That's harsh. I'd certainly want *something* from the mother, something to salve the horrible duped feeling, but didn't this fellow have any emotional ties at all to the child?

No real satisfactory answers to these questions myself, really. Just very glad I never went there. My own problems are good enough.:p

Posted by: Kevin L at February 16, 2007 12:53 PM

My problems with this are simple.

We seem to keep wanting the Gubmint to "force" people to make choices we think they should make, but sometimes I think we need to accept that certain moral choices may be more properly in the private sphere and not subject to gubmint intrusion.

Such as relations between family members.

Ahem.

Posted by: Loreena Bobbitt at February 16, 2007 01:03 PM

"The only real question is what the operation of law can compel from a man who is not, in reality, the child's father."

The answer is, "Whatever it likes." Apparently, it's not even a question in any contention -- the decision was 7-0.

Which, really, is just what you'd expect given that the question was, "Does the court have the power?" The answer, given that courts decide these questions, is always "Yes, of course we do."

The state can compel the rest of us to pick up the tab, as Cricket notes. If it can make all of us do so, why not just one of us? Insofar as the interest of the child is the main thing, why not just force Donald Trump to pay child support? Probably only because they've yet to think of it.

Posted by: Grim at February 16, 2007 01:10 PM

Not that I'd like to agree with Ms. Bobbit, but she's right here. The real answer is to get the government entirely out of the family's affairs. The family should be a separate sphere of influence entirely outside of government involvement, in the way that the state was meant to be a separate sphere entirely outside of Federal involvement. We've let those walls fall down. There is almost no space left in which we can say, "The government may not enter here."

Posted by: Grim at February 16, 2007 01:13 PM

Here is another conundrum: Paternity suits.
Until DNA testing came along, all a cad had to do was claim that the woman was 'intimate' with other men. As the Church Lady would say, a slut.
Didn't matter that the child in question looked like papa, all the alleged father had to do was
raise a reasonable doubt and mom was left holding the bag.

While the courts and law seek to address this, it is wrong and muddleheaded to make this man pay for a child which isn't his. Why should he?
And shouldn't that render the back payment moot?

This thread leads in to so many other places I dare not go right now...

Posted by: Cricket at February 16, 2007 01:27 PM

Yes, the man may have had emotional attachment to the child up until the point in which he found out he was not the biological father. I cannot even imagine the kind of emotional turmoil a man would go through after learning of that type of betrayal. Emotional attachment to the child could very likely be a casualty of that emotional turmoil.

Posted by: Miss Ladybug at February 16, 2007 02:04 PM

Before reviewing the comment thread, I was back and forth on this one.

After reading the comment thread, it's no clearer to me.

Based on the principle, "Best interests of the child," I tend to agree that this is the best decision, despite the unfairness to the NON-biological father.

Yet, at the same time, I question how forcing a man who is not really the child's father to pay for his support, is actually in the, "best interests of the child."

Perhaps it is okay, from a financial standpoint, but having a man who is all likelihood going to be hostile toward the child's mother doesn't seem to be the best course of action. Especially as, I agree with Miss Ladybug, chances are the man might also resent the child.

For those reasons, I just don't know if I can agree with this decision. In that vein, I'd say that everyone would be better served by forcing the mother to reveal the real father, and having him be the, "walking paycheck." (thanks AFE!)

Also, as an adoptive parent, I'm cognizant of the child's right to know who his real father is, both for practical (medical) reasons and emotional reasons.

**slinking off into the corner next to Cricket, to mutter**

Posted by: JannyMae at February 16, 2007 02:14 PM

The Law of Unintended Consequences applied in this case suggests that fathers would be well-served by routine pre-natal paternity tests.

Posted by: daveg at February 16, 2007 02:19 PM

Boy, isn't *that* a sad comment?

Whatever happened to love? Where's my knife?

[fumbling around]

Posted by: Loreena Bobbitt at February 16, 2007 02:29 PM

What's love got to do?
Got to do with it?

What's love but a secondhand emotion?

What's love got to do
Got to do with it?
Who needs a heart
When there's hearts to be broken?

Posted by: Tina Turner at February 16, 2007 02:31 PM

What a way to make a fortune! We must always look for the silver lining. Here's how it works:

After males reach puberty when force them to donate to a sperm bank. Put their sperm on file as it were. Then we force them to become eunuchs. No visectomies, remove the whole thing! When they marry the sexually frustrated couple can simply go to the bank and have the bride artificially inseminated. No muss, no fuss, and paternity will be assured to please everyone.

Next we buy up all the adult store sex toy franchises and place them in every neighborhood. This will please both the feminists, who don't need a penis anyway, and the courts, who are penises anyway.

Sounds like a plan! An entire country of eunuchs with women having no responsibilty whatsoever. The courts can control all franchising rights under the guise of doing it for the chilluns! And we can make a friggin' fortune while protecting the paternity rights of men who might otherwise not be fathers. Think of the side effects to society. No more STDs, no more prostitutes, no more unhappy women! It's Nirvana I tell you! :-o

Posted by: Business Opportunity at February 16, 2007 02:57 PM

"No more STDs, no more prostitutes, no more unhappy women! It's Nirvana I tell you!"

All funded by the tax-payers with a new, overarching Federal Department! Huzzah!

Sign me up... just make sure to hit an artery with that razor sharp knife, please.

Posted by: Kevin L at February 16, 2007 03:25 PM

"An entire country of eunuchs..."

I don't know. That hasn't worked out well in our test case of Massachusetts.

Posted by: Grim at February 16, 2007 03:55 PM

Geez Kevin, you are looking at it all wrong. Of course there will be drawbacks like those folks on the toilet seat hinge making production line losing their jobs. Since the age old conflict of lowered toilet seats will be resolved they will no longer be needed. And the enviroment will take a hit since everyone will sit down to pee. The toilet paper production will skyrocket forcing us to use more trees.

But the positives far outweight the negatives! We'll create a whole new area of law with the advent of vibrator litigation law and all those new attorneys to go with it. We can re-train the toilet seat hinge workers to become mobile adult toy repair technicians thereby creating a whole new service industry.

And look at the advancement that will occur in technology. Once we all become eunuchs we'll lose the ability to do manly stuff like change batteries etc. Science will come up with some type of hand sized motion activated battery recharging system. Think of it!

Plus you'll not have to worry about immigration. A quick drop trousers check will identify those that don't belong and will result in immediate deportation! Major money saver there! Not to mention the circus and bringing men from other countries to the sideshows. "Step right up and see the penis" $5! :-o

Posted by: B.O. at February 16, 2007 03:57 PM

"An entire country of eunuchs..."

I don't know. That hasn't worked out well in our test case of Massachusetts.

Yes but drowning deaths in rivers has decreased dramatically!

Posted by: River Man at February 16, 2007 04:06 PM

"Best interests of the child" my ass! If we felt that way then we would outlaw abortion. The law says the "best interests of the child" only trump the rights of a man, whether the real father or not. "The best interests of the child" never seem to trump the interests of the mother, however. She is free to do as she pleases, whenever she pleases.

If the law where consistent in upholding the "best interests of the child" in all cases, irrespective of gender, then I MIGHT be willing to reluctantly support it. Anyone remember a little Constitutional concept called "equal protection" under the law?

Furthermore, anyone familiar with these types of domestic relations matters knows that the men who women sleep around with are the "dangerous, bad-boy" types. She has the stable, honest family man at home while she runs around with Snake, the outlaw biker, on the side. Naturally, Snake is now doing 10-20 in the State Pen for armed robbery, so his ability to support his lovechild is nil. Therefore, let's pile on the blameless, cuckolded husband! He has played by the rules, worked hard at a career, and tried to generally do the right thing by a child he believed was his. He must be punished further, while Snake and the whore wife are let off scot free. This is not justice.

Posted by: a former european at February 16, 2007 04:23 PM

"Not to mention the circus and bringing men from other countries to the sideshows. "Step right up and see the penis" $5!"

*shiver*...

Shall I do that again?

... *SHIVER*

Posted by: Kevin L at February 16, 2007 04:47 PM

Uh-Hmmm, in all seriousness.

If I knew a child by my ex wasn't mine and I had to pay child support I would resent the hell out of that kid. I wouldn't have anything to do with it court order or no.

On the other hand, if I married a lady that already had kids I'd grow to love them as my own. If I adopted a child I was love it as my own.

It is MY choice!

It is insanity to try and use government force to make a man pay for a child that is not his own. It's a losing proposition all the way around. For the man and the child. The slut and the adulterer of course are the only ones to benefit. As is intended in our lack of personal responsibilty society. But then that is what a Left mindset represents!

Posted by: JHD at February 16, 2007 05:05 PM

"Not to mention the circus and bringing men from other countries to the sideshows. "Step right up and see the penis" $5!"

I RESENT THIS!!!

I AM NOT SOME CHEAP SIDESHOW FREAK!!!

I HAVE DIGNITY!!!!

Posted by: The Left Penis at February 16, 2007 05:23 PM

Oh yeah? Open a pickle jar then get back to me! :-o

Posted by: Rocky & Da Boyz at February 16, 2007 05:52 PM

You guys are crazy! Thanks for the laughs!

Okay, points taken, but I have known a lot of divorced women who are struggling to raise children, oftentimes after the father took off. My mother was one of them. So let's not dump on all single mothers here, and make them all out as irresponsible sluts.

Let's focus on this situation. This woman is an irresponsible slut, and the ex-husband SHOULD NOT be responsible for another man's child. That's justice.

The more I ponder on this, I'm leaning more towards the idea that justice would be served by making Mommy fess up, and placing the burden on the child's actual father.

BTW, I'm in full agreement that when a child is conceived, the woman has all the rights, and the man has all the responsibilities. Just because it's, "her body," she is the one with all the options. If she wants the baby, and he doesn't, he's screwed...without a kiss. And if he wants it, and she doesn't he's SOL. That sucks.

Posted by: JannyMae at February 16, 2007 05:54 PM

Just because it's, "her body," she is the one with all the options. If she wants the baby, and he doesn't, he's screwed...without a kiss. And if he wants it, and she doesn't he's SOL. That sucks.

That's what condoms and keeping your pants on were invented for. He can't be put in jeopardy of that suckage without his consent.

Yup, I'm harsh. But it's simple physics/biology...

Posted by: FbL at February 16, 2007 06:23 PM

Condoms won't help if someone else is impregnating your wife or girlfriend.

Posted by: a former european at February 16, 2007 06:33 PM

That's what condoms and keeping your pants on were invented for.

You wear the condom under the pants, right? It'd be sorta' embarrassing the other way around!

But talk about fashion! Flourescent chartruese condoms would definitely make a statement!

Do it for the men! :-o

Posted by: Buzz P. Anties at February 16, 2007 06:37 PM

Condoms won't help if someone else is impregnating your wife or girlfriend.

No but a set of hedge clippers would! Snip Snip!

I'm still trying to figure out what the courts are recommending here. If you still have to pay for a kid when you had nothing to do with it couldn't you sue the ex for lack of performance?

That condo in Costa Rica is looking better all the time. And that is exactly what I'd do. Leave. With no trace! Be damned if I'd pay for a kid born due to adultery!

Understood about deadbeat dads JannyMae but this case is past the ridiculous into the surreal. Who thinks this s**t up? Growl!

Posted by: Gardner at February 16, 2007 06:44 PM

But don't dare tell a woman to keep her pants on if she doesn't want a child...

That's fascist.

Posted by: Masked Menace© at February 16, 2007 06:51 PM

The outcomes of such unusual cases do make for very bad law, and is largely dependent on one's financial resources, or lack thereof. The indigent don't pay child support and their progeny become clients of the welfare state. If one is well off, the support will not be a burden. The law is terribly wrong here.

AFE, the law has little to do with justice, but with the law. Almost nowhere else than in family/divorce law is this fact more glaring. I have two cases that I am familiar with and illustrate different points.

1) A friend of mine ran a steel fabrication business and one of his ironworkers was divorced and had remarried. His ex went back to court and got child support increased to the point the man could not support his second family. The sheriff's and DA's representatives arrive and attach the man's paycheck. My friend asked them if they had any idea how stupid what they were doing was. He told them the guy would just quit his job, which he did. No job, no money, no child support.

2) I had another friend who could not keep his pants zipped and conducted himself like an oversexed teenager. Singles bars and one night stands well into the era when this became very dangerous behavior. I could not believe the guy. Well, it turns out AIDS didn't get him, but a woman attorney who had selected him to be the father of her solo child. She announced Jimmy was going to be a daddy and how much he was expected to pay. It is not funny, but I almost died laughing at the time. He went into hiding and, so far as I know. never paid a cent of child support.

Posted by: Mark at February 16, 2007 06:51 PM

Mark, your points are well-made, but how dare you accuse a woman of predatory behavior! Just wait until hordes of NOW supporters come protest outside your door! You are obviously a misogynist!

Judging by what I see on TV, women are helpless victims of a dominating, patriarchal society. That is, unless they are career women, in which case they are sassy and independent, breaking through that glass ceiling while "Sistahs are doing it for themselves" plays as an anthem in the background. Again, judging by what I see on TV, women are apparently inordinately qualified to be judges, police chiefs, and starship captains, when they are not embracing their helpless waif status.

Cassandra has often discussed the inherent contradictions of the Leftist view of George Bush, as the idiot genius. He is simultaneously viewed as a mindless dolt and a brilliant machiavellian puppetmaster. Liberals apparently see no contradiction in holding these simultaneous, but disparate, views.

I have long argued that most women (not the magnificent ladies on this blog, of course) hold and expect others to hold similarly disparate views about women. Women are supposed to be both independent and hopelessly dependent -- self-reliant and helpless maidens in distress. Well, which is it? Are you Xena, warrior princess, or Maid Marian in constant need of rescue?

Women tend to want it both ways, whichever is most advantageous at the moment. This is particularly reflected in the divorce/abortion/family issues arena where women are expected to take on no responsibilities and no accountability.

Frankly, the present state of affairs is truly abusive to those men who are trying to do the right thing by their children. Being men, they usually will not discuss the pain and heartbreak they suffer while the system and their ex-wives beat them like a rented mule. At least a rented mule would have some PETA supporters on its side. No one seems to give a damn about the plight of honest dads.

Maybe this state of affairs is why I read more and more stories about Dads drifting apart from their kids after a divorce and starting a new life elsewhere. Even the mangiest hound gets tired of getting kicked after a while.

Posted by: a former european at February 16, 2007 08:42 PM

afe~

Ten years ago this past December, I had a business trip to Milwaukee. I was to be up there for about a week and a half. Because of all the heavy winter clothes I packed, I had two suitcases. I was to be picked up at the airport by the sales rep responsible for that territory. He was late in getting there. Being who I am, I gathered up my suitcases and my carry-on items and sat waiting for him. When he did arrive (I was the only one still left in baggage claim from my flight), he said something to the effect of expecting some helpless little 'ol Southern Belle. Boy, was he wrong! I come from strong German and Irish stock!

Do I expect an man to hold a door open for me? No. Do I object when a man does actually do it? Also, no - I tell them "thank you". I can paint the walls of my house, change lightbulbs, mow the lawn, fix a running toilet, patch holes in drywall and barbeque. I am not a helpless female. But, it would be nice to have a guy to help out.

Posted by: Miss Ladybug at February 17, 2007 12:07 AM

Miss Ladybug: Please note the specific exception I made for the ladies of this blog in my prior comment. I was referencing the bias in favor of women under the law, and cheered on by our society.

If you prefer a different context, then I refer you to the recent Duke University "rape" scandal. No matter how much the accused men protested their innocence and pointed to exculpatory evidence, the female accuser was widely believed and the men were tried and convicted in the media. After all, women are all honest and pure and would NEVER fabricate such a horrendous accusation. Likewise, men are all known brutes and oppressors of helpless maidens, absconding with them and tying them to railroad tracks while twirling their sinister mustachios -- a la Snidely Whiplash.

Now that the truth has pretty much come out, has everyone openly apologized to the wrongfully accused? They have lost nearly a year of their lives and suffered severe harm to their reputations. Oh wait, I forgot they were men so that's OK then. After all, they have no rights and deserve no consideration.

Posted by: a former european at February 17, 2007 03:41 AM

Why is the woman not being prosecuted for larceny by trick? She needs to face the reality:

She STOLE money via her lies.

She should be given two alternatives: either cough up the name of the real dad, and get support from him, or: go to jail for stealing money from her former husband. If he wants, he can then claim FULL custody. Otherwise, place the kid for adoption.

Posted by: Linda F at February 17, 2007 06:13 AM

Linda, you are being too kind. I detest women who stoop to these tricks because they want to preserve.....what? Honor? What honor? Virtue?
That's laughable when she passes her lover's bastard off as her lawfully wedded husband's and forces HIM to pay because the baby's dead beat dad
can't or won't?

This kind of thing infuriates me as much as the cads who walk away from their paternal obligations. This is why we have morals, to protect society and preserve it.

Oh don't get me started...

Posted by: Cricket at February 17, 2007 09:07 AM

It happens often enough, it should have a name.... hm.... The Starling Gambit?

Posted by: Sailorette at February 17, 2007 01:22 PM

I like "The K-Y Conundrum", seems aptly fitting considering this guy is getting reamed.

Posted by: Gracie Lou Freebush at February 19, 2007 05:58 PM

Regarding Ms. Ladybugs comment that there should be more accountability for how the child support is sent, I couldn't agree more. I pay my child support on time every month like clock work, and it's extremely aggravating to witness my ex-wife mis-manage those funds; constantly in financial trouble. It is more than obvious that much of that "support" does not go to my son. It goes to new car payments, furniture, or her live-in boyfriend's three children. She has even complained to me before that she doesn't have enough money to buy groceries for all (keep in mind I only have 1 child) the children, implying that I should give her a little extra.

My proposal is to set up a separate child support account that functions just like a normal checking account. The custodial parent gets a debit card, checks, etc; however, a copy of the statement goes to both parents. I don't think it's a lot to ask for some type of visible proof that child support money is actually being spent to support the child. Second, I think all custodial parents should be required to take a class on budgeting and managing money. . . but that's just me. That solution makes too much sense (i.e., it will never become a reality in our current chaotic Family Court System.

Posted by: Eric at February 22, 2007 04:19 PM

Welcome to America,

Just another example of the great American Police State.

My bank account was attached even though I was paying child support and my child support was current.

I got laid off, and they were taking the monies out of my unemployment check. Just 1000.00 arreas was enough for them to seize my bank accounts they put a lein on everything I own....

Welcome to the State of New Hampshire.

Posted by: Demitros Paicos at March 21, 2007 10:28 PM

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