Despite the title of this blog, I haven't really "ranted" often lately; however, that has all changed today, thanks to my friend April. She sent me a link to a law firm in California founded by this dude called David Stone and oh-so-innocently suggested I look at it and maybe write a letter. She knows me well; I happily followed the little link because she has, in the past, sent me other links to law firms like this one and I have gotten a kick out of them. I did NOT, however, get a kick out of this one, at all. Instead, it really just pissed me off, and I have composed a small, friendly letter to this man to let him know just what I think about his law firm.
Dear Mr. Stone:
You are an asshole.
-And that is as far as I could get. Quoting from his website directly, he says "Father's rights is a passionate subject that in reality has no answer." Number one, that sentence doesn't make a bit of sense; where did this guy go to school (I know it says, but really, I don't give a shit. He is an idiot regardless.)? Number two, he really has no fucking clue. Let's talk about Father's rights, Mr. Stone.
In this country, fathers have the right to do this: to decide one day that they don't want to be married or be fathers anymore, and then walk away. They have the right to forget they have a responsibility to the child(ren) they helped create, both in an emotional and financial respect, and also have the right to go on to live unfettered lives. They also have the right to choose to not pay their child support, work under the table, decline to file taxes, refuse to pay for insurance or their portion of child care and medical costs that are not covered by insurance.
I believe it incredibly important for men to remain in their children's lives regardless of whether or not the marriage or partnership lasts, but let me give you a little insight: most men DON'T. I know some really awesome kids-including my own-whose fathers have chosen to sever all ties and then bitch and moan to people like you because they don't have any rights. What about the rights of those kids? Are you going to physically drive to the absent father's home, hog-tie him, and force him to go visit that child he abandoned? Because don't kids have the right to see their father, to be financially and emotionally supported by both parents, regardless of marital status?
When we women get the same rights you are wanting for men, I will support that, but until then, no dice. Statistically speaking, women who go through a divorce with OR without children are almost immediately thrown into poverty; I have NEVER heard a case where that has happened to a father. Statistically speaking, we single moms make something like 40 cents to the Almighty Man's dollar, and we very often have to support the children left behind with no help from the sperm donors. We are also much less likely to get and keep a "decent" job, regardless of education, because when we have young children, we have to be absent from work more often. Hm, sick kids means no daycare or school and, therefore, no work for mom. Men all over the country have fathered children without care or regard, and once the marriage ended, in your mind the obligations did as well. What is left but a single mom trying her best to put back together the shattered lives of her and her children?
Let me tell you this: when men are carrying their share of the burden-financially, emotionally, and physically, then you can talk to me about their rights. When they are taking time off of work to take care of a sick baby, when they are willingly paying their child support and setting aside money every month for their kids to go to college, when they are buying shoes and diapers and helping pay for braces, I will support their rights. When they talk to their teen aged sons about the porn mags mom found under their mattress, when they are escorting teen aged daughters to the doctor to talk about birth control, when they are telling the baby how big he is for sitting on the potty, when they are attending Scout Banquets, I will listen. When Mom is so sick she is throwing up blood and dad says, "Let me take the kids so you can rest," or offers to stay overnight with them so mom can go pretend for a night that she is someone besides a mom, or when he acknowledges, publicly and loudly, that his kids are so fucking lucky to have a mom who gives a shit, I will FIGHT for those same rights.
Until then, Mr. Stone, you and your fathers who claim to have no rights can go grease each other up, bend over, and take it right up the ass. After all, that is what we women have to go through every single day.