WALSH: What About A Man’s ‘Reproductive Rights’?


An Alabama father has been granted the right to sue an abortion clinic on behalf of the unborn child who was aborted against his wishes. Ryan Magers claims that his child was the victim of a wrongful death and hopes to bring the case to a jury trial.

Pro-abortion advocates are predictably apoplectic. They say it is “chilling” and “terrifying” that a father would seek justice for his murdered offspring. Abortion enthusiast Jessica Valenti ranted that Magers is part of a patriarchal conspiracy to “control women’s bodies.” “I hate his face,” she added. Valenti and her feminist comrades cannot comprehend why a father might not want his baby to be killed. The notion of parental love is foreign to these people, unsurprisingly.

We are told that the case is extraordinary because it recognizes the “fetus” as a person with legal rights. It is indeed unprecedented for that reason, and for another: it gives a voice to the male member of the reproductive duo. In abortion, three people are horribly and irreparably affected, but only one has any say in the matter. While feminists complain about the alleged oppression of women in modern America, the fact remains that there is an entire category of rights — “reproductive rights,” we call them — which apply only to women. You never hear of a man’s “reproductive rights” because he has none whatsoever. His progeny can be killed without his consent. The oppressed woman is empowered to be judge, jury, and executioner. Feminists cherish that power, and that’s why they are panicking over this case.

Notice the mixed messaging. Through the first nine months of his child’s existence, a man is constantly reminded that he has no rights, no say, no input, no vested interest. It is no concern of his whether the child lives or dies. The child really doesn’t exist, as far as he’s concerned. That thing growing in the womb is merely an extension of the woman’s body. “Pipe down and let the woman decide,” he’s told.

But if the child manages to survive the gauntlet of the modern womb and emerge from the birth canal intact, immediately the father is expected to leap into action. Whereas for nine months he was told to butt out, now he must butt in or risk being labeled a deadbeat. Whereas before had no rights, no say, no input, now he owes 18 years of child support. The father gets the responsibility of parenthood, and the shame for failing to live up to it, but few of the rights that usually accompany obligation.

Now, I think a man absolutely has the obligation to care for his child and his child’s mother (starting with marrying her, if he hasn’t already taken that step). I don’t intend to offer excuses for deadbeat dads. It is the pro-abortion left that implicitly offers those excuses. If a man takes pro-abortion talking points at face value, he will conclude that his child is neither his child nor his problem. This is exactly why deadbeat men almost always do support abortion. You will notice that avid pro-abortion men are rarely responsible, married fathers. That is no coincidence.

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