State Child Support and Single Mums

January 27th, 2014   Submitted by Freya Wilde

AnFemI’m voluntaryist in all things, and not a feminazi, but women have self-ownership over their wombs and what results from it. Once a child is born that human has self-ownership over themselves, and the best parents honor that as much as they can as the child comes into their own. That made clear, I often think about a particular scene in Firefly, a show almost all anarchists love for its libertarian themes and all around awesomeness. In the last episode the bounty hunter wonders whether it’s fair that women, who are smaller and weaker, are the ones who have babies? I’ve pondered his questing, wondering, what does he care? What’s the big deal if women have the babies despite being smaller? I was even repulsed at the thought of a big hairy dude having a baby and breastfeeding. But I’ve come to the conclusion that the reason he’s offended is because women have self-ownership over themselves and what they produce, same as a man would. But a man cannot have a baby, and that’s what the bounty hunter was ultimately referring to. Before that scene it had never crossed my mind that this might actually be an issue with some men.

U.S. courts treat men and women as if they don’t own their bodies. Once men have voluntarily given their sperm to a woman, it’s in her body. Logically, it’s her property. Yet, the courts say that the man owns half the child the woman produced in her own womb, as if it’s some kind of unseen contract.

There’s no middle ground on self-ownership. You either own yourself and what you produce, or you don’t. Individualist anarchists know humans own everything that they produce, and their property, especially their bodies. Women are lucky enough to be born with a uterus to produce babies, and mammary glands to feed them. Men have to get over the fact that biological fathers are at the mercy of whether or not mothers let them partake in their children’s lives. Abrahamic religions (another form of statism aimed at controlling other people) have tried for thousands of years to counteract nature on behalf of men. Marriage contracts give children the father’s name, and historically even ownership of those children. This is ultimately to the detriment of male/female relationships, and the child’s self-ownership. Because the state says a child must belong to at least one adult guardian. The marriage contract is an attempt by men to lay claim to women’s rightful property, including the children they produce. Just as people have been brainwashed to believe the state is right, so too have women been brainwashed to believe the Abrahamic tradition. Men have no claim on children, except by the woman’s grace.

In a voluntaryist world women will be better off. How could they not? Men would be better off too, but women have the most to gain. I believe this is why humanity doesn’t have anarchism already. Sure, there would be no state handout for having a kid, but with no state to declare child custody, or any ties to a father, that child is the mother’s property. Look at most other mammals. It’s the most natural thing in the world for a mother and child to be together.

This is likely radical thinking to most, but it doesn’t mean a father should not be involved in his children’s lives. I think it’s a wonderful, beautiful, desirable thing, no matter the situation, but it should be up to the mother.

Most people don’t realize that men win custody battles far more than women. It’s just that most men don’t fight for custody, so it appears as if women receive custody of the children more. From the Leadership Council on Child Abuse:

“Although women are more likely to get custody of their children, this is often because they are more likely to ask for it. When men ask for custody, they often get it. According to a report by the American Psychological Association, an abusive man is more likely than a nonviolent father to seek sole physical custody of his children and may be just as likely (or even more likely) to be awarded custody as the mother (APA, 1996). A report by the American Judges Foundation, reported that 70% of the time an abuser who requests custody is able to convince the court to give it to him.”

Dr. Phyllis Chesler wrote in her article “Can ‘Good Enough’ Mothers Lose Custody of their Children to Violent and Abusive Men?“:

“I found that when fathers fight they win custody 70 percent of the time, whether or not they have been absentee or violent fathers. Since then, other studies, including ten State Supreme Court reports on Gender Bias in the Courts, have appeared that support most of what I say and the Massachusetts report confirms my statistic of 70 percent (Maged & Frankel, 1990; Abrams & Greaney, 1989)”

Statist family courts create winners and losers, and children are the biggest losers for being lead to believe that they are the cause of strife between parents, and knowing they’ve been rejected if the father doesn’t want custody. If it was up to the mother in the first place, as it is with most other mammals, a child with no involved father might not think anything of it. Again, I’m not saying it’s not a good thing when the father is involved. I’m saying the social expectations of the nuclear family might not be healthy for children. The mainstream blue print of one man/one woman marriage for their whole lives might be contrary to nature, and be the cause of undue suffering.

What would being a single mum be like in a voluntaryist world? Probably much like being a single mum in a statist world, just without the safety trap of welfare so-called “benefits.” It would be a woman’s choice if she wanted a child, and with who, and under what circumstances, because it’s her body.

In a voluntaryist world responsible parents would teach their daughters to be entrepreneurs, so they’re never dependent on others, or destitute if they find themselves alone with a child. They would teach daughters to tuck money away, and to have back up plans for all kinds of situations, especially if they plan on getting pregnant (and in most cases if you aren’t protecting against pregnancy, you are planning on getting pregnant). There would be charities to help unprepared mothers, especially since without statist welfare benefits there wouldn’t be such a social stigma against single mothers. Voluntaryist charity would be much more creative and helpful than anything the state currently has, and women would likely get together and create places to help other women who didn’t prepare for whatever reason.

Without the statist education system there would be incredibly creative learning opportunities that we currently can’t even imagine without the state’s permission. Perhaps there would be restaurants that hire single mums, with in-house daycare, and housing facilities, so these mothers could learn on the job. These places don’t currently exist, due to the statist hoops, too many to mention.

When a man says that women are the gatekeepers of sex what he’s really saying is, I resent that women have self-ownership, that they don’t give me what I want, and that they can have babies and I can’t. The state ruins all the natural power a woman has, whether by taking her offspring, or by controlling her through state marriages. Women can only have true self-ownership in a voluntaryist world. A true feminist should be an individualist anarchist, not a socialist who wants to dictate what others do. In a truly voluntaryist world, women would be goddess’s over themselves as would men be gods over themselves.

159 Responses to “State Child Support and Single Mums”

  1. Rich in MANo Gravatar says:

    I am a single father with full custody in MA and have never been anything but a father and husband. Never abusive. My wife has BPD and is very capable and stable sometimes but, sometimes not so much. It was in the best interest of the child for me to have custody. I don’t necessarily want it that way. I even lowered the c.s. from what the court set because it was in my ex’s best interest. “Best interest” should pertain to all parties involved, not just the child. If everyone is happy, the child will be happy.

  2. leafNo Gravatar says:

    I disagree on a number of fronts. 1 if you’re making the case that the man has given his biological property away, What qualifies this? H as any agreement or contact been made that he ifs forfeiting his biological property? 2 if your argument is based on property being in your body and no longer yours when it leaves your body, then wouldn’t the same holds true when the child is no longer in the mother’s body? 3 As a voluntaryist, the child owns itself. It’s supposed to be the child’s decision to make that decision when it is able to. Keeping the child only with the mother would give the mother an unfair advantage on the child’s decision once it is able to make one.

  3. MatthewNo Gravatar says:

    “Most people don’t realize that men win custody battles far more than women.”

    This is a bunch of feminazi crap. It’s the sort of half truth that’s as bad as a lie, and it’s used by feminazis to somehow prove that the courts are not biased against men, and that men don’t care about their kids is much, which is why they don’t ask for custody.

    Women are given primary and or sole custody in a vast majority of instances. Fighting a legal battle for custody of one’s children can be expensive. Men do it only seldom, because it’s too much to spend on a losing battle. Only when the woman is a borderline or a crack whore or something like that do men usually attempt to get sole custody of their children. Otherwise, they’re throwing money down the drain.

    You may claim not to be a feminazi, but between calling men hairy and disgusting, and lying through half truths about the family courts, it’s really hard to tell you apart.

  4. Sam SpadeNo Gravatar says:

    Almost a year old, this thread has been one of the most interesting — and still eliciting thoughtful comments. Once again I congratulate Freya on an excellent essay — not an agreeable essay, mind you — an excellent one. (It really wasn’t that disagreeable to me)

    As an anarchist I observe that the family is the only legitimate governing unit — hands down. All others who claim “jurisdiction” are merely interlopers, predators — dangerously armed beasts of prey. All human beings are sui juris from the first declaration, “I wanta do it my-self, Mommy!”

    But then comes along that eerie phenomenon only recently labeled Stockholm syndrome — the emotion that allowed states and nations and “countries” to arise and take over your and my thought processes. Instead of simply raping all the women, then slaughtering all the men, women and children, leaving their carcases to rot on the desert floor; the Genghis Khans and Attila the Huns came to see how easily the production of those victims could be enveloped. They gave rise to what “we” came to call “the-family-of-nations”.

    In the process those conquerors and their henchmen fathered a lot of kids — not necessarily through forceful rape, but because many women would eagerly spread their legs for emperors and their appointees. The precursor of today’s “groupies“.

    It is indeed a trifle sad to think the human female has to be considered the submitter rather than a conjoiner in things sexual. Because I’d like for all newborn human beings to be the product of two loving, dedicated people; willing to unite and devote their love and their energy to raising decent individuals.

    Say what you will, the human being is not related to mammals. There are so many factors that differentiate human kind from the animal kingdom it’s difficult to know where to start — but the human family provides one of the greatest substantiations for my claim. Sam

    • Sam SpadeNo Gravatar says:

      The link for Stockholm syndrome should be this. Sorry. Sam

    • Freya WildeNo Gravatar says:

      I agree with you Sam, about the family thing being a desirable thing.
      And there will likely have to be a deep culture change for no state to exist, since I personally think ultimately states were invented to control what women can produce, along side with corporate supernatural religions about the same time, for the same purpose.
      This likely doesn’t mean what you think it does, for example women own their offspring, which isn’t true, since every human has self ownership. As John Holt said, “Babies are nice people.” Most moms voluntarily want fathers in their lives and in their children’s lives, voluntarily. Separation of pregnancy/birth and state.
      Thank you.

      • Sam SpadeNo Gravatar says:

        So often I’ve seen “libertarians” and “anarchists” on discussion boards with great hue and cry debate over the topic, “…does the parent own her child?…”
        Which, as Mr. Pynchon would say, begs the question:

        “If they can keep you asking the wrong questions, they don’t have to worry about answers.” ~ Thomas Pynchon
        http://www.goodreads.com/author/quotes/235.Thomas_Pynchon

        The parent will prevent (“restrain”) the baby from falling off the bath table onto the cold, hard floor out of genuine love — not the desire to rule or “own” another human being. As time develops parents will “lengthen the tether” (often with a level of trepidation — particularly when the time comes you must allow your teenager to have the car for his/her first date) — once again, out of genuine love and desire for the safety and well-being of the child. How many times have not a few of us sat up, nervously awaiting “curfew” — listening anxiously for the beautiful sound of the car coming up the drive.

        We parents know the hazards. They’re learning. Hopefully not “…the hard way…” I’m convinced anarchists make the best parents. We’ve had to come to understand the dichotomy between “rule” and “love”.

        And the time will ultimately come when the child will provide supervision and care for the aging parents in their final years. With love. I’m 80, two of my daughters are my conservators (voluntarily on my part) — for a number of sound reasons.

        The only legitimate governance is within the family unit. I’d like it to be with a loving Mom and Dad, but single parents also provide excellent and loving guidance for their children and must never be sold short. Sam

  5. Freya WildeNo Gravatar says:

    Most everyone in these comments is really emotional about this topic. My question is, do you want a state? Do you want a state to decide these things? Really? Are you sure? I sure as hell don’t. I think I would leave these kind of things to voluntaryism, and self ownership before I’d ever trust the state. Have you seen how well its going now? Men are throw in jails for not paying child support! You can’t have it both ways. You either want a state to force what you want on women and her offspring, or you want her to voluntarily give you access to yours and her’s offspring. Which is it? Keep in mind, in a voluntaryist culture, I believe most women want the fathers involved with their children, because its natural for humans to want to be with their families and loved ones. The state is not natural, and is harmful to families.