Women have a choice if and when they become parents, writes Catherine Deveny. Why should men not be given the same opportunity?
Catherine shares her thoughts of ABC news saying, “I support men being able to opt out of fatherhood early in a pregnancy via what is known as a financial abortion.”
“I believe a woman should not be forced to become a mother any more than a man should be forced to become a father. If a man has not said, “I want to have a child with you now-ish”, it is fair to assume he doesn’t, and therefore should be able to legally withdraw from becoming a parent. ”
Catherine writes, “A financial abortion (also known as a paper abortion or a statutory abort) would essentially enable men to cut all financial and emotional ties with a child in the early stages of pregnancy.
This means he would opt out of all rights, privileges and responsibilities of parenthood in a binding and not reversible decision.”
Mel Feit, director of the National Centre for Men in the US, said, “Women now have control of their lives after an unplanned conception but men are routinely forced to give up control, forced to be financially responsible for choices only women are permitted to make, forced to relinquish reproductive choice.”
And yet there are currently no laws anywhere in the world that enshrine a man’s right to opt out of parenthood, states Catherine.
In Australia, the biological father of a child is legally required to pay child support; he also has legal rights alongside social expectations.
Does the good old argument “it takes two to tango” stand? What do you think?
Sweden’s fight for a father’s right to abort
We shared earlier this year that Sweden’s Liberal Party proposed allowing expectant fathers to ‘legally abort’ their unborn babies right up until the 18th week of pregnancy — the cut off time for actual, physical abortions in the country.
“Men should have an equal right to opt out of parenting and choose whether or not to become a parent,” Marcus Nilsen, chairman of the party’s youth wing West (LUF) told the Aftonbladet newspaper.
“There are endless examples of men who can’t even say whether they want to be involved in parenthood or how involved they want to be. It is important that men remain honest with themselves and their intentions.” Aftonbladet newspaper.
The male abortion would be a legal decision, allowing unwilling fathers to relinquish all parental rights and responsibilities for their unborn child. The father would have no future rights to see his child, but would be relieved of all financial responsibility.
The proposal sparked debate in Sweden, but was firmly rejected by the Liberal party’s central office.
The youth wing of the Liberal Party claim that male abortion is a feminist policy. They believe it will provide equality for the sexes, and allow expectant mothers to know whether their baby’s father is prepared to support the child.
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