In a perfect world, no one would ever have sex who wasn't prepared to raise a child. We would only have sex with people we love and ponies and unicorns would live in our backyards pooping rainbows and frolicking freely. Sadly, it's not going to happen any time soon, and because of that, there will be a number of unwanted pregnancies every year.
But what happens in an unwanted pregnancy? Who gets the final decision as to what happens to the fetus when neither a man nor a woman meant to create it? Until now, it has always been a decision left entirely to the woman. She can abort or she can carry to term, either reaching an agreement with the father to adopt or suing him for child support and using his money to raise the child.
But what about the man? Does he get any say in the matter? In a word: no. And it's not fair.
Many women disagree and think that men actually should have a say in whether a woman carried THEIR baby to term, though. The idea is catching on. It's a complicated issue fraught with tension, but the reality is, a man has no options other than at the time of conception. Women hold all the cards.
I cannot simultaneously call myself a feminist and expect a man to bank roll my decision to have a child he didn't want. I have two children and I still say the same.
Otherwise, what happens? Women use their bodies to get child support. Major NBA players have more child support lawsuits than anyone else in the world. Coincidence? I doubt it. It doesn't happen every time, but it does happen.
We can't have our cake and eat it, too. Sad as it is, unless a fetus is viable, it's still a part of my body and I can decide what to do. But the flip side of that is that I can't force a man into fatherhood against his will.
We can say that it takes two to tango and that he should have worn a condom if he wanted to avoid a baby. All of that is true. But the woman is just as much at fault there. She also didn't take the proper precaution.
The right to choose should apply to us all. It's impossible to have full equality. That's just a biological fact. But the family court system is pretty much designed to encourage unwanted children. If I were to make a decision to have a baby independent of the father's opinion, then I would also have the strength to support that child myself.
Do you think men should have the right to choose?
Image via Alexander Torrenegra/Flickr