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More news from Canada: The National Post reported on a story about both the bio father and stepfather being forced to pay child support for a child, referred to as 'double dipping' (since the child/mother gets twice the support). The ruling is being challenged in the Canadian court system. An outline of the situation is kind of complicated, so I won't summarize it here. One thought occurred to me, though: the boy who is the recipient of child support from both men has a sister, and does anyone really think the boy should be financially supported better than her? It's an absurd concept, to say the least.
The Orange County Register printed this news story about bureaucratic errors in the child support collection system - and men who are labeled 'deadbeats' when they are really current with their payments. One man is suing a District Attorney's Office to compensate for damages he suffered while he challenged child support debts he never owed. It should be no surprise that more accountability needs to be built-in to this system to allow errors to be corrected.
Ed Bartlett from Men's Health America has distributed the announcement for "Round 3" of the action plan to get the Men's Health Act of 2000 passed by Congress. Please click "Read More..." below to see what you can do this week for the cause of men's health in America.
The National Post printed this story that the Canadian government has commissioned a study which has determined that most Canadians want changes to the Divorce Act that would be more child friendly and encourage shared parenting. Anne McLellan, the Justice Minister, accepted the report but told the committee that it would take three years for the changes to go into effect. According to the article, this wait is neither necessary nor has it made many people happy.
George W. Bush is promoting a "Paternity Registry" law that would deny fathers the ability to stop adoption proceedings taken by the mother if they did not register as the father within 30 days of the child's birth. Click here for the ABCnews article. Bush is quoted as saying, "Our child welfare system...must do more to encourage fathers to care for their families or, failing that, to expedite adoption when that is the
mother's wish or the mandate of the state." Note: The Men's Activism News Network does not officially endorse any political candidates.
Brill's Content printed this story on Betty Friedan and her accusations of domestic abuse by her former husband Carl Friedan. Ms. Friedan has made several attempts to downplay her comments about abuse in her newest book Life So Far, and Kimberly Conniff, the author of this article, suggests that it may have been done to create some controversy around the book to boost its sales. The article also goes into the generally poor journalism surrounding the issue, where Mr. Friedan was not given the chance to comment on the accusations before most book reviews were put in print.
Clinical trials are being performed for a birth control pill that can be taken by men. So far there have been good results, and common side effects such as acne and high blood pressure are not showing up in this particular drug. No word on when it might become available, but this is good news nonetheless. The BBC news article can be read here.
The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports in this article that a man has lost a second court battle to have his child support obligation removed from a child which DNA tests have proven is not his. He argued that the last 10 years he has been paying child support was the result of his being defrauded by the mother of the child, but the judge would not amend the paternity suit. Isn't it great that DNA tests can be used to force men into unwanted paternity while they often mean nothing when absolving men of it? Update: I've fixed the link to the story.
Florida's Supreme Court decided last Thursday that a man must pay more than a year's worth of alimony to the estate of his dead ex-wife. Apparently the woman died after the divorce was finalized but at the time both parties were appealing parts of the final judgment. Since the man had not paid the alimony between the time the divorce was finalized and his ex-wife's death (due to the appeal), he argued that since she was now dead he shouldn't have to pay her the money. The court disagreed, in its time-honored trend of sticking with legal technicalities rather than common sense. ABCnews has the article here.
The UK Times reports that the Defence Ministry in England is preparing field trials for mixed-gender infantry units to determine whether women should be allowed in combat positions in the military. Read the article here. The main reason this is being done is to give women better opportunities to compete for senior positions in the military, but this would also help to balance the rights and responsibilities women have in the armed forces. Considering this is a controversial topic, why not discuss it in our comment boards? Click "Read More" to enter the comment board for this article, and read our tutorial if you need help posting comments. What do you think, would this be a step forward or backward for the men's movement?
Today The Nando Times printed this story which outlines a domestic violence research survey done by a Justice Department agency and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Their numbers suggest that 25% of women and 7% of men are raped or assaulted by an intimate partner. Despite the fact that these findings are not in line with family studies findings (ie, Straus, et al), there is an important acknowledgement in the report that "Violence among intimates involves relationships and factors that are too complex to be captured by a single research approach," and that men under-report DV more so than women.
Cathy Young has written another, shorter review of Christina Hoff Sommers' book The War Against Boys for Jewish World Review. Read the article here. The other, longer review that I made reference to above is the Salon review, which can still be found here. I like the fact that Cathy Young is somewhat critical of the book but still recognizes its importance.
This New York Times article talks about the reasons that people divorce. It shatters misconceptions such as men initiating divorce most often or women leaving primarily to escape abusive relationships, and reveals the deepest link: child custody laws. The author discovered that women initiate divorce more often than men do because they don't fear they will lose their children in the divorce.
A woman from California gave her 10 year old son to someone she met on the internet because she "could no longer cope with his misbehavior." A police officer involved in the case is quoted as saying that the problems were "really typical 10-year-old stuff." Now that normal behavior of boys is becoming inconvenient for modern parents, and drugs like Ritalin are so popular to tranquilize them with, should it be a surprise that some people are just not willing to deal with boys at all? Click here for the Associated Press story.
US News has another great column by John Leo, where he talks about the crisis we face regarding young boys and education. He makes references to the research in Christina Hoff-Sommers' latest book, The War Against Boys, and talks about recent events such as the new sexual harassment guidelines set up in the Manhattan Chelsea school district, which apply to kids as young as 4. As usual, Leo puts out another great pro-male article.
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