Facts, Thoughts and Opinions

Are children better off with mothers and fathers?

Mothers and fathers contribute different things to the lives of their offspring. Mothers, for example, tend to be more attuned to the moods and feelings of young children especially; fathers excel at discipline and at pushing children to give their best effort. On this topic, though, I think it can help to move beyond the sociological research and ask people: are you really comfortable asserting that a child suffers no misfortune by being motherless? Or by being fatherless? Of course there will always be children who grow up under sub-optimal circumstances, often for reasons beyond anyone’s control. That’s not a justification for cementing sub-optimal circumstances as a new norm.

Demise of fatherhood

Instead of two parents being responsible for the children they conceive, an expectation that was held up by social norms and by the law, we now take it for granted that neither parent is necessarily responsible for their children. Men are now considered to be fulfilling their duties merely by paying court-ordered child support]. That's a pretty dramatic lowering of standards for ''fatherhood.''

Same-sex marriage and the meaning of "mother" and "father."

The legal legitimization of same-sex marriage affects your status as a father or a mother. Courts are already ruling that "de facto" parents "perform a share of caretaking functions at least as great as the legal parent."1 Affirming that a male partner in a same-sex marriage is equivalent to the natural relationship of a mother in “caretaking function” is not only preposterous. It marks a monumental shift in the posture of the law toward the capability of parents within marriage and therefore the status of both mother and father relevant to their child.


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