Kinsella thinks a guy should be banned from breeding for failure to pay child support. (*) Kinsella gets it wrong, but there are parts of his argument that I’m sympathetic with:
If you pass by a drowning man in a lake you have no enforceable (legal) obligation to try to rescue him, nor should you; but if you push someone in a lake you have a positive obligation to try to rescue them. If you don’t you could be liable for homicide. Likewise, if your voluntary actions bring into being a baby with natural needs for shelter, food, care, it’s akin to throwing someone into a lake. In both cases you create a situation where another human is in dire need of help and without he will die. By creating this situation you incur an obligation to provide for those needs.
By this argument Kinsella and I would probably agree that abortion is morally indefensible. But I hold that full responsibility for the child must be recognized where nature bestows the child. Consent to sex is not a contract to raise children together. Consent to sex neither commits a man to providing for a woman’s child nor commits the woman to allowing that man in her child’s life.
As Lynette has written:
Children are born as the consequence of a series of deliberate and cognitive decisions that only their mothers make, such as 1) Will I have sex? 2) Will I use birth control? 3) Will I carry this child to term? 4) Will I elect to keep this child rather than to adopt it out?
Those are each questions that take considerable thought and deliberate action to implement over the course of time. However, if potential mothers would face up to just one question, it would solve almost all custody and support issues existing today. It’s a question which has been so far relegated into the background that it’s hardly ever featured in these sorts of discussions, but it’s what women need to put the most emphasis on.
Is this man worthy of fathering my children?
It’s only in recent times that the above question of utmost importance has been driven into obscurity by the perversity of a statist system that inevitably awards the most irresponsible behaviors. Throughout the ages, women have realized the importance of being selective about the men with whom they breed and have recognized that they are ultimately responsible for the care and upbringing of their children, but the burgeoning nanny state vigorously selects for numb-cunted felon factories who siphon the public dole, it encourages good for nothing ex-wife princesses to use their crotchfuit as an excuse to soak their ex-husbands for a 20 year meal ticket and it has muddled the heads of the masses into thinking that some external force must always ride to the rescue of any bedraggled madonna who ends up in the cold with her sprog because of dismally poor choices on her own part.
It’s clear to me that women are, by nature, 100% responsible for the children they bear. If the prospect of having children is such a burden to them, if they cannot shoulder that responsibility on their own, it’s imperative that they use special care and caution in the selection of a mate and/or get a signed contract addressing the duties of each parent toward their children and each other if needs be.
By imposing legal consequences on this man Kinsella would actually be shielding women from the costs of their own bad judgment, which of course will never encourage them to employ better judgment. In a free society individuals bear the costs of their own decisions. It’s a biological fact that the natural consequences and costs of reproduction are not symmetrical for men and women. Any attempt to shift those costs is misguided social engineering.
Even though I hold mothers morally responsible for providing for their children I would never invite the state to regulate reproduction, as Kinsella has. If Kinsella individually wants to protect a child from its unfit mother then perhaps he may morally do so, but collectivist regulation of reproduction is a nightmare scenario.
(*) – Here I had written: ” (By the way Stephan, it would be polite to link to us when you refer to us directly as chattering punks, or at least to your earlier chattering punk piece. Now I wouldn’t be surprised if someone at LRC has had a few words with you about linking to NT, but I assume you could still do it on your own blog.)”
I stand corrected; Kinsella has informed me that no one discouraged him from linking to No Treason. He has now linked his reference to No Treason, which I appreciate and for which I thank him.