Tag Archives: Stanley v Illinois

The Case Against Illegitimacy

“In regard to the only issue that I consider properly before the Court, I agree with the State’s argument that the Equal Protection Clause is not violated when Illinois gives full recognition only to those father-child relationships that arise in the context of family units bound together by legal obligations arising from marriage or from adoption proceedings. Quite apart from the religious or quasi-religious connotations that marriage has – and has historically enjoyed – for a large proportion of this Nation’s citizens, it is in law an essentially contractual relationship, the parties to which have legally enforceable rights and duties, with respect both to each other and to any children born to them. Stanley and the mother of these children never entered such a relationship. The record is silent as to whether they ever privately exchanged such promises as would have bound them in marriage under the common law. See Cartwright v. McGown, 121 Ill. 388, 398, 12 N. E. 737, 739 (1887). In [405 U.S. 645, 664] any event, Illinois has not recognized common-law marriages since 1905. Ill. Rev. Stat., c. 89, 4. Stanley did not seek the burdens when he could have freely assumed them.

Where there is a valid contract of marriage, the law of Illinois presumes that the husband is the father of any child born to the wife during the marriage; as the father, he has legally enforceable rights and duties with respect to that child. When a child is born to an unmarried woman, Illinois recognizes the readily identifiable mother, but makes no presumption as to the identity of the biological father. It does, however, provide two ways, one voluntary and one involuntary, in which that father may be identified. First, he may marry the mother and acknowledge the child as his own; this has the legal effect of legitimating the child and gaining for the father full recognition as a parent. Ill. Rev. Stat., c. 3, 12-8. Second, a man may be found to be the biological father of the child pursuant to a paternity suit initiated by the mother; in this case, the child remains illegitimate, but the adjudicated father is made liable for the support of the child until the latter attains age 18 or is legally adopted by another. Ill. Rev. Stat., c. 106 3/4, 52…

The Illinois Supreme Court correctly held that the State may constitutionally distinguish between unwed fathers and unwed mothers. Here, Illinois’ different treatment of the two is part of that State’s statutory scheme for protecting the welfare of illegitimate children. In almost all cases, the unwed mother is readily identifiable, generally from hospital records, and alternatively by physicians or others attending the child’s birth. Unwed fathers, as a class, are not traditionally quite so easy to identify and locate. Many of them either deny all responsibility or exhibit no interest in the child or its welfare; and, of course, many unwed fathers are simply not aware of their parenthood.

Furthermore, I believe that a State is fully justified in concluding, on the basis of common human experience, that the biological role of the mother in carrying and nursing an infant creates stronger bonds between her and the child than the bonds resulting from the male’s often casual encounter. This view is reinforced by the observable fact that most unwed mothers exhibit a concern for their offspring either permanently or at least until [405 U.S. 645, 666] they are safely placed for adoption, while unwed fathers rarely burden either the mother or the child with their attentions or loyalties. Centuries of human experience buttress this view of the realities of human conditions and suggest that unwed mothers of illegitimate children are generally more dependable protectors of their children than are unwed fathers. While these, like most generalizations, are not without exceptions, they nevertheless provide a sufficient basis to sustain a statutory classification whose objective is not to penalize unwed parents but to further the welfare of illegitimate children in fulfillment of the State’s obligations as parens patriae. 4

Stanley depicts himself as a somewhat unusual unwed father, namely, as one who has always acknowledged and never doubted his fatherhood of these children. He alleges that he loved, cared for, and supported these children from the time of their birth until the death of their mother. He contends that he consequently must be treated the same as a married father of legitimate children. Even assuming the truth of Stanley’s allegations, I am unable to construe the Equal Protection Clause as requiring Illinois to tailor its statutory definition of “parents” so meticulously as to include such unusual unwed fathers, while at the same time excluding those unwed, and generally unidentified, biological fathers who in no way share Stanley’s professed desires. [405 U.S. 645, 667]

As Mr. Justice Frankfurter once observed, “Invalidating legislation is serious business . . . .” Morey v. Doud, 354 U.S. 457, 474 (1957) (dissenting opinion). The [405 U.S. 645, 668] Court today pursues that serious business by expanding its legitimate jurisdiction beyond what I read in 28 U.S.C. 1257 as the permissible limits contemplated by Congress. In doing so, it invalidates a provision of critical importance to Illinois carefully drawn statutory system governing family relationships and the welfare of the minor children of the State. And in so invalidating that provision, it ascribes to that statutory system a presumption that is simply not there and embarks on a novel concept of the natural law for unwed fathers that could well have strange boundaries as yet undiscernible…”[i]

“By excluding unmarried mothers and divorced mothers (for the most part) from eligibility, the framers of the mothers’ pension laws made it quite clear that their primary concern was to support traditional families when those families suffer financial difficulties from the loss of the husband’s income. They were also concerned to take no action that would encourage illegitimacy or divorce. In addition to the criteria excluding certain categories of recipients, there were behavioral criteria as well…Only much later, with the welfare legislation of the Great Society were moral criteria abandoned in administering AFDC programs- the direct successor of mothers’ pensions. The subsequent explosion of the illegitimacy rate is a persuasive argument that the concerns of mothers’ pension proponents were justified.”[ii]

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Because of the feminist movement and the sexual revolution (which was a product of the feminist movement), we now have a welfare system and a legal system that rewards illegitimacy and punishes marriage. The result is a society that is wrecked. Our legal system is corrupt, our schools are dangerous, children are failing school and turning to crime, and the happiness of women is at the lowest point in our history. In this article I consider one of the main reasons that I believe all these problems are occurring. The main problem, I believe, is the breakdown of our families.

The word “family” is indeed very diverse if we consider all of the cultures throughout history. Every society has had its own customs regarding marriage. Some societies were matrilineal with the fathers (if paternity was ever even acknowledged at all) being occasional visitors with no necessary obligation to support the children and having no claim to them. The most successful and civilized societies have generally been strictly patriarchal, with men having the responsibility to support, protect and lead their families and, of course, the resulting rights that come along with it. Many societies have had homosexual marriages and polygamy/polyandry and a whole host of other living arrangements. In the view of feminists, all of these living arrangements can exist simultaneously. Indeed, their entire movement was about changing our laws and customs to reflect any family arrangement one can think of. All stigma concerning illegitimacy and unwed mothers had to go because, of course, it was “discrimination” and an attack on personal freedoms. The stigma of illegitimacy was one of the first things that had to go in the eyes of feminists because, of course, women must be sexually free and marriage was the enslavement of both men and women in their view. As Germaine Greer stated in 1970:

“Even though there are more problems attendant upon bringing up an illegitimate child, and even friendly cohabitation can meet with outrage and prosecution from more orthodox citizens, marrying to avoid these inconveniences is a meaningless evasion.”[iii]

Yet, after a few decades we see the results of these policies and no true analysis of the cultural and legal climate today can reasonably conclude that all has changed for the better. The prime leaders of the women’s liberation movement claimed that women would be better off if they were sexually free and postponed marriage to pursue their careers first. They championed easier divorces and abolition of all the laws that protected wives, mothers, widows and all women in general on the grounds that it was making women second class citizens. In their eyes, if women could leave their families to pursue careers and enjoy equality with men by being sexually promiscuous all would be better. The prominent feminist leaders of the time believed that housework and the care of young children was holding women back. If only society would do away with the “terrible” protective legislation and treat women like men then, they claimed, would women truly be free. Quoting Germaine Greer once again:

“Men argue that alimony laws can cripple them, and this is obviously true, but they have only themselves to blame for the fact that alimony is necessary, largely because of the pattern of granting custody of the children to the mother. The alimonized wife bringing up the children without father is no more free than she ever was…If independence is a necessary concomitant of freedom, women must not marry.”[iv]

The feminists have now secured almost every single legal and cultural change they sought, and men’s groups jumped on board to exploit it all to their advantage. Yet, in looking around today at the situation young women, older women, wives and mothers find themselves in it does not look good. I have yet to see a case where the feminist way has actually made women free. Quite the contrary.- feminism has given away a woman’s bargaining power in every area of life. In the old days, many babies were not conceived in marriage but most were at least born into it because of the social and legal pressures on BOTH parties. If a marriage did not take place after a pregnancy occurred the unwed mother would not be entitled to benefits and the unwed father would have no claim to the child. Now that illegitimacy is accepted both culturally and legally, women have lost their power to demand commitment and support from men. Today’s men know they do not have to marry a girl once she becomes pregnant for all the rights and pleasures that were once reserved solely for married men who took on traditional responsibilities for a wife and children are now freely given to them.

Feminism and the sexual revolution has really messed women and girls up real bad. They are pressured into sex by their boyfriends and then forever regret it. Because of feminists the common law rights that once protected young women from male pressure to engage in sex are gone. Traditional laws protected women and sent a clear message to the male that he was responsible. For instance, traditional statutory rape laws punished the man (as he was the only party who would walk free from basically all of the consequences of the sexual act) but protected the young woman. But, of course, this was “sex discrimination” and feminists did not stop until every jurisdiction gender-neutralized these laws.

Another problem we have as a result of widespread illegitimacy is the welfare culture that is turning us into a socialist state where everyone eventually becomes equally poor and equally bad off. For a young woman whose life at home is bad she knows an option available to her is to have a child and collect the resulting welfare that is freely given to her. One can hardly blame a woman for wanting to get out on her own and have a family. I myself understand as I had a child very young. The only difference is that I married the father and now many years later am still married to him and living a very stable life where our children can be raised. But the majority of young women today do not get these options. Generally when a young woman becomes pregnant today the father denies all responsibility or the two simply cohabit for a time and collect welfare as our tax laws penalize marriage and the welfare benefits are greater when couples cohabit and unwed fathers can claim rights at any time they want to regardless of whether they marry the mother or not.

 
It is the old saying of “if you subsidize something you will get more of it. “With a tax system that rewards marriage and strict laws against illegitimacy a young woman could marry the father of her child without losing anything. Moreover, taking away the free pass that unwed fathers get today would lead many to consider heavily the decision to marry the mother and take responsibility for her and the child.

 

 

Now unwed fathers do not have a complete “free pass” as they still are responsible for some child support, but very few actually pay their dues. Men evading responsibility is not a new thing but the feminist movement has stripped women’s bargaining power greatly in this area. The maternal preference that protected mothers of young children in custody disputes no longer exists. A man wishing to evade responsibility today has many options at his disposal that his male ancestors did not. Joint custody laws allow him to completely be off the hook for child support as our laws now assume both parents will then equally assume responsibility for both the care and support of the child (another feminist fantasy that simply has not panned out in reality). Men’s groups were the most adamant about joint custody laws in the late 70s and 80s, often disguising their intentions so as not to arouse opposition from the public, but feminists championed them too as it would “free” women from the responsibility of caring for children all the time so they could pursue their careers and gain equal economic power to men. Also, the threat of a custody battle (where the outcome can never be known as there are no clear guidelines and both parents have an equal shot at custody and even support thanks to the feminist movement) causes many women to decide it is best to just support the child alone.

 
To restore stability to society and protect the sanctity of the family, the current legal and cultural climate must be changed. Illegitimate births must be de-legitimized once again. Promiscuity and divorce is not freedom. Cohabitation is not freedom. A woman will be used and tossed aside. She will waste her youth on a career and cohabiting with several lovers only to find in the end that she is not on equal terms with men and while his desirability may increase with time, hers will not. If a society is to be civilized and prosperous, stigma and penalties must be attached to sexual promiscuity and illegitimacy.

 

 

Notes:

[i] STANLEY v. ILLINOIS, 405 U.S. 645 (1972) 405 U.S. 645

[ii] Roberton, B.C., “Force Labor: What’s Wrong With Balancing Work and Family,” p. 19;28. Spence, 2002.
[iii] Greer, G., “The Female Eunuch,” p. 359. HarperCollins, 1970, 1971.
[iv] ibid., p. 358-359

 

 

© 2013 What’s Wrong With Equal Rights. Reproduction in whole or in part is strictly prohibited.

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Feminist Hypocrites II: Feminists Lie to Women, Mothers

Warning: Post contains some graphic material

Feminists have long been taking credit for things they never did for women. In fact, they have actually taken part in removing the very rights of women and mothers they claimed to have given them. They will never acknowledge this now, of course. Second and Third Wave feminists just love to jump on board and say they are an extension of “First Wave” feminism, but in fact they are not. But here is what it has done. Modern feminism has relieved fathers and husbands of their burdens and responsibilities. Loss of laws that protected and favored women gives men an unprecedented power to control women like never before.

“The feminist quest for female fungibility with males has led the women’s movement to support the invalidation of laws benefiting and protecting women. This was the thrust, for example, of litigation directed by Ruth Bader Ginsburg when she was director of the Women’s Rights Project of the American Civil Liberties Union and , often using male plaintiffs, secured invalidation of laws that favored women…In the area of divorce reform, one of the benefits women have lost is the maternal preference which favored awarding custody to the mother. Almost all states now grant men and women a statutory equal right in custody… In order to secure custody, many women will drastically compromise their financial interests: ‘women who are scared to death of losing custody will trade away anything else- child support, property, alimony to keep it from happening.'”[i]

The main thrust of modern feminism has been to remove laws that protected and benefited wives and mothers in the name of equality. I have plenty of blogs posts about this that I have written. With the current fabrications father’s and men’s right groups like to come up with about women and our modern judicial system I’m sure this might be downright shocking and insulting (the truth usually is). But, I am not exactly known for mild, politically correct blog posts either. My views are generally shocking and insulting to both sides. I’m not interested in approval from anyone or a pat on the back for a job well done. The day approval is what I seek, is the day I should resign from writing as my mission means nothing any longer.

Our grandmothers may have been shamed for having babies out of wedlock, but this shaming helped to ensure protection for all women. Women today are forced to become single mothers. They don’t want to be, but with promiscuity and the granting of rights to men over illegitimate children without them having to take traditional responsibilities causes these hardships. In the past, many women were pregnant on their wedding day. The social and legal pressures on both parties forced them to come together or pay the price. If the man wanted rights, he had to take on the responsibilities of marrying the mother and supporting her for life. If the woman wanted to keep her reputation and be supported she knew she too would have to marry. The widespread availability of birth control and abortion shifts the responsibility from men to women as now men can have easy sex because they know the woman is pumped full of hormones to keep her from ovulating (or trick her body into believing she is already pregnant) and if she should become pregnant, once again it is her responsibility as Planned Parenthood is right around the corner to perform the abortion (the man might pay for it or he might force that responsibility onto her but either way he knows it is not his problem as neither law or custom forces him to take responsibility).

“Our grandmothers might have led more sheltered sex lives, but they also controlled what amounted to a sexual cartel: setting a high price for sexual involvement and punishing both men and women if they broke the agreement (either by forcing them into marriage or by ostracizing them from respectable company). Sexual rules create sexual solidarity among women. If men feel they can flirt from woman to woman, they will. They will enjoy our ready availability and exploit it to their advantage. But if women as a group cease to be readily available- if they begin to demand commitment (and real commitment, as in marriage) in exchange for sex- market conditions will shift in favor of women. “[ii]

The feminist war against women has been a massive one that has wrecked the lives and shattered the very beings of millions of women and children everywhere. Feminists today lie. They say they “need” feminism because of the most absurd issues, such as society’s unwillingness to take rape seriously. Yet feminists have never taken rape nor women’s bodies seriously. Ruth Bader Ginsburg herself and others filed a brief for the American Civil Liberties Union as amici curiae in the case of Coker Vs Georgia (1977) to argue that rape of a grown woman was not worthy of the death penalty.[iii] Thirty years later we would see Ginsburg further degrade women as a Supreme Court Justice by joining the majority opinion in the case of Kennedy vs Louisiana in a case involving the rape of an eight year old girl where

“…An expert in pediatric forensic medicine testified that L. H.’s injuries were the most severe he had seen from a sexual assault in his four years of practice. A laceration to the left wall of the vagina had separated her cervix from the back of her vagina, causing her rectum to protrude into the vaginal structure. Her entire perineum was torn from the posterior fourchette to the anus. The injuries required emergency surgery.”[iv]

This is really not so surprising coming from a premier player in the women’s movement who believes that protecting any group of people creates “harmful stereotypes” and the courts now long-gone “paternalistic” treatment of women was subjecting women to “second-class” citizenship.[v]

Today women face hardships that would not have happened in the 1950s. Husbands held responsibilities for, and to an extent authority over, their wives. But lest he wish to support her for life while she continued to live in the house with the kids, he would not leave her. Until women’s liberation a man had to provide the needs of his wife by law. Although coverture was mostly abolished by the end of the 19th century many aspects still remained in law. “Married women’s ability to make purchases on credit in their own name was denied by coverture. [Yet the wife was permitted to be] economically active by pledging her husband’s credit for necessaries (food, clothing, lodgings and medicine).”[vi]

Feminists love to tell us about the terrible days where women were treated so badly and unwed fathers didn’t have to support their children. Yet, they never tell us about the other side of the story. If a man fathered illegitimate children he could claim no rights. Today’s men have rights without having to take on the responsibilities for women and children that come along with it. Few unwed fathers actually support their children (and the feminist movement fought fiercely, winning Supreme Court decisions such as Orr vs Orr that forced states to gender-neutralize family law thereby making the traditional burdens of fathers and husbands the burdens of mothers and wives as well) and the loss of the maternal preference is a wonderful technique used against women to get them to forgo child support altogether in order to hang onto their children.

“Also absent from the discussion was any notice that Steven was not married to the mother. As will be discussed in chapter 4, it has been little more than twenty years since the U.S. Supreme Court, in Stanley v. Illinois, recognized any custodial rights for unwed fathers, much less those equal to the mothers’. This case seems to have given Steven-who never lived with Jennifer and Maranda-the same rights as a recently divorced father who had always lived with them, or, for that matter, the same rights as Jennifer. And no one found this worthy of comment.”[vii]

“The tender years doctrine (or maternal presumption, as it was often called) was well established by the 1920s. By the 1950s in Michigan and all other states it was the law The rule of maternal presumption reflected a universally held belief in the early part of this century that mothers by nature were the more nurturing parent for very young children. In their drive for equal rights in the seventies, many feminists spurned this very assumption, believing it fixed women as second-class citizens in a patriarchal structure.”[viii]

But, not to worry, feminists are on the scene to help. They realize women’s newfound predicament and are seeking justice.

“There is a national crisis for women and their children in the family law courts of this country. Affirmed by experts and leaders in the women’s movement, the existence of this crisis is verified by women in every state who report injustice in their family law cases, especially battered mothers trying to protect their children from abusive fathers who aggressively litigate against them, using family court to stalk, harass, punish, and impoverish their former partners and children. NOW recognizes this crisis for women and their children and seeks to address discrimination against women in family courts.”[ix]

The new wave of feminists seek to carry on the legacy of their woman-hating older sisters still pining for the same “equality” and rejecting “the patriarchy,” yet seem to have developed a convenient case of amnesia. “Yet, having been taken seriously by every state legislature in the country…feminists seek to absolve themselves from the blame, as if society should have known better than to listen to them.”[x] They have contributed largely to many social ills and problems women face. Their support of no-fault divorce laws and abolition of hundreds of laws that protected women largely contribute to the widespread “feminization of poverty” and the way out, they suggest, is affirmative action and subsidized daycare. Never will you hear them admit that they had anything to do with the problem’s women face today.

“No longer concentrating on the oppressiveness of home and family for women, feminists argue instead that, unfortunately, married mothers must remain in the work force to protect themselves from the very likely possibility of becoming single-parents impoverished by divorce. This is a likelihood, they choose not to remember, their movement was highly instrumental in creating.”[xi]

“Enactment of no-fault divorce laws unambiguously warned women to adopt the feminist perspective and replace homemaking with full-time career. The ‘present legal system,’ concluded Lenore Weitzman, “makes it clear that instead of expecting to be supported, a woman is now expected to become self-sufficient…’Thus, as always, feminist ideology converged with the interests of men who would avoid the responsibility for women that traditional marriage entails.”[xii]

Notes:

[i] Graglia, F.C. “Domestic Tranquility: a brief against feminism,” p.295. Spence, 1998.
[ii] Crittendon,D. “What Our Mothers Didn’t Tell Us,” p.35. Touchstone,1999.
[iii] http://aclu.procon.org/view.resource.php?resourceID=3131#AmiciCuriae
[iv] http://www.law.cornell.edu/supct/html/07-343.ZO.html
[v] Cushman,C. “Supreme Court Decisions and Women’s Rights” CQ Press, 2001.
[vi] http://economics.ouls.ox.ac.uk/13127/1/Item.pdf
[vii] http://www.law.berkeley.edu/3158.htm
[viii] Ibid.
[ix] http://www.nowfoundation.org/issues/family/
[x] Graglia, F.C. “Domestic Tranquility: a brief against feminism,” p.296. Spence, 1998.
[xi] Graglia, F.C. “Domestic Tranquility: a brief against feminism,” p.296. Spence, 1998.
[xii] Graglia, F.C. “Domestic Tranquility: a brief against feminism,” p.136-137. Spence, 1998.

 

© 2012 What’s Wrong With Equal Rights. Reproduction in whole or in part is strictly prohibited.

Feminism Hurts Women, Child Custody and Support for Rapists

“…In regard to the only issue that I consider properly before the Court, I agree with the State’s argument that the Equal Protection Clause is not violated when Illinois gives full recognition only to those father-child relationships that arise in the context of family units bound together by legal obligations arising from marriage or from adoption proceedings…The Illinois Supreme Court correctly held that the State may constitutionally distinguish between unwed fathers and unwed mothers. Here, Illinois’ different treatment of the two is part of that State’s statutory scheme for protecting the welfare of illegitimate children…Court today pursues that serious business by expanding its legitimate jurisdiction beyond what I read in 28 U.S.C. 1257 as the permissible limits contemplated by Congress. In doing so, it invalidates a provision of critical importance to Illinois carefully drawn statutory system governing family relationships and the welfare of the minor children of the State. And in so invalidating that provision, it ascribes to that statutory system a presumption that is simply not there and embarks on a novel concept of the natural law for unwed fathers that could well have strange boundaries as yet undiscernible…”- STANLEY v. ILLINOIS, 405 U.S. 645 (1972); dissent by Justices Burger & Blackmun

———————————————————————————————–

“The feminist quest for female fungibility with males has led the women’s movement to support the invalidation of laws benefiting and protecting women. This was the thrust, for example, of litigation directed by Ruth Bader Ginsburg when she was director of the Women’s Rights Project of the American Civil Liberties Union and , often using male plaintiffs, secured invalidation of laws that favored women…one of the benefits women have lost is the maternal preference which favored awarding custody to the mother…In order to secure custody, many women will drastically compromise their financial interests: ‘women who are scared to death of losing custody will trade away anything else- child support, property, alimony to keep it from happening.'”[1]

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40 YEARS LATER:

 

“Prewitt revealed that what she discovered was that the majority of U.S. states, 31 in total, have no laws that prohibit a rapist from exercising custodial rights. A woman is forced to risk her own legal rights to have the rapist brought to trial in exchange for the man dropping his interests in interacting with the child.”[2]

“Another survivor, a 14-year-old girl, decided to give up her baby for adoption. She was required by law to give notice of the adoption to the rapist, an adult man. While she was permitted by a court to give up her rights to the child, the rapist retained his and then sought child support payments from her,” the lawyer writes. “Another survivor, who gave birth to twins after a date rape, raised them peacefully with her intimate partner until they were five years old, at which time the rapist learned of their existence and filed a lawsuit to establish his paternity and gain visitation rights, and attempted to use the mother’s sexual orientation against her in the legal proceedings.”[3]

1. Graglia, C.F. “Domestic Tranquility:a brief against feminism,” p. 295. Spence, 1998.

2. http://global.christianpost.com/news/rapists-can-claim-custody-visitation-rights-for-victims-babies-80656/#IIAKAsVzsz6QCvgD.99

3. ibid.