Missouri Bill Would Require Father's Consent For An Abortion


Missouri’s HB131, introduced by Republican state Rep. Rick Brattin, is sure to stir controversy. It requires that a woman seeking an abortion get her husband to sign off unless the pregnancy resulted from rape or incest:

Here’s the text:


Rep. Brattin told Mother Jones that the idea for the legislation came for him after he was required to get his spouse’s permission to get a vasectomy, though it’s not clear where that’s required under current Missouri law.

Still, while many will find this proposal to be a disgusting affront to a woman’s control of her body, isn’t it really a balancing of rights? I do not support abortion, but if it is to be legal, shouldn’t both parents of the child get a say?

As it stands now men get no choice. Creating a baby requires the participation of a man and a woman, but only the woman gets a choice on whether or not to have the child. If she chooses to have the child, the man is obligated by law to support it whether he wanted the child or not.

There are plenty of child support nightmares out there to talk about. Like a statutory rape victim who was forced to pay child support to the woman who had his child.

Supporters of abortion tell us that a woman shouldn’t have to bear the obligation a child because of an accidental pregnancy. Yet, we’re ok with saddling a male with that responsibility? In fact, it’s interesting how often women suggest that the pro-life movement is really just about men wanting to control women’s bodies. If it were really men just acting in their own self interest, wouldn’t they want to keep abortion legal as a hedge against the nightmare that child support and the family law system represents for people of the male persuasion?

Feminists would scream bloody murder if we gave men a choice when it comes to paying child support. And I would join them, because I think those who create children have a responsibility to provide for those children.

But suggesting that a man ought to maybe be on even footing with a woman when it comes to abortion?

It illustrates that what feminists want is not equality but a sort of inequality tilted in their direction.

How about this: If you create a child, you’ve also created an obligation for yourself, and neither the man nor the woman in the equation should get a veto. I wouldn’t support Rep. Brattin’s bill if I were in Missouri, but then I don’t think women should get a choice about whether a child lives or dies either.