Boys will be … defined? Is nature (sex) v. nurture (gender) settled debate?

When I fill out paper forms I cross out “gender” and write “sex” next to it.  The PC police get mad at this, “it’s gender” they tell me and some even cross out “sex” and re-write in “gender”.  I can only wonder how it was over time a persons sex turned into gender in classifying the sexes.  Sex, defined, is the 2 main categories of humans based upon their reproductive functions (Sex organs).  Gender, defined, is the state of being male or female based upon social and cultural differences and not by biology.

The argument of nature versus nurture as impacting human behavior has been going on the my entire social science career of 40 years.    Except in rare circumstances people are born with either male or female reproductive functions and so throughout time we have identified people as either male or female.  For example,  you might be a heterosexual male or gay male but you were still identified by reproductive ability, male.  Your sexuality and sexual preferences were separate from your sex.

Enter Gender Feminist Theory which holds that the sexes are actually “genders” and the state of being male or female is based upon social and cultural differences entirely and not on biology in any amount.  The theory holds that your sex (defined by nature) has no bearing on how you act as a male or female, but that you are socially constructed to act a certain way.  Boys will be boys because they are taught to be boys by society, so the theory goes, ditto for girls.

I guess missed the “it’s settled science” memo and reports in peer reviewed scientific journals explaining that nurture won out totally.  I have seen no paper or report discussing that the issue of nature (reproductive function) over nurture (socially constructed) was settled science or that one had more weight than the other.  From what I had read and reviewed, forced gender identification opposite to your sex actually caused developmental problems.  A good example of biological sex holding over socialization is the case of David Reimer (Bruce at birth).

One of twin boys, Bruce, born in 1966 he had a botched circumcision which seriously damaged his penis.  His parents brought him to a psychologist who advocated for the theory of gender neutrality, socially constructed boys and girls, and convinced his parents he would be better off raised as a female, so Bruce had sex reassignment surgery (testes removed) and was to be socialized as a female, Brenda,  and given estrogen in adolescents for breast development.  But the socialization didn’t work and “Brenda” did not identify as a girl.  From 9 years old on “she” wasn’t acting the part and knew he was a boy.

At 14 years old “Brenda” had surgery (including a double mastectomy, testosterone injections and his penis reconstructed) and he changed his name to “David”.  The failure of the gender socialization was reported in medical circles by noted sexologist Dr. Milton Diamond debunking the blank slate social construct gender theory and to prevent this from occurring in the future.  The story was told in 1997 in the book “As nature made him: the boy who was raised as a girl”.

Even though the theory of a socially constructed “gender” was debunked prior to the turn of the century we still write “gender” on our forms and there are those who still see men and women as “socialized” beings, ignoring their biological sex.  Certainly nurture plays a role in how we develop, and there is great overlap in how male and female humans behave naturally.  But it is easy to see that it is the forced roles placed upon children which are bad, this whether you are forcing a boy into a traditional male role or are trying to force a boy into being a female.

We are beginning to see some people calling out the “gender” feminists for putting forth a socially constructed sex theory which is scientifically unproven and wrong and contrary to biology.  Dr. Barry Kuhle, an evolutionary psychologist speaks to this denial of science in his piece in Psychology Today entitled “Giving feminism a bad name”.  He points to the gender feminists radical response and denial of any science which contradicts their theories and beliefs.

Christina Hoff Sommers has also pointed to “gender” feminists theories undermining science most recently in a Dartmouth Review interview where she not only takes to task those who would distort the truth for their ideology, she points to how those who put the social construct theory into practice with their own toddlers soon learn of its fallacy.  A recent article in Intellectual Takeout, “Neuroscientist: Gender-neutral Parenting is Futile” quotes neuroscientist Debra Soh who cautions against treating children as blank slates with no biologically determined sex characteristics.  The articles author, Annie Holmquist asks the valid question, “Are we actually degrading both male and female by encouraging them to ignore scientific fact and abandon the natural differences between the two sexes?”

I would answer her, yes we are.  In my mind gender feminists are the sexists as they would define the behaviors of both male and female by their definition of acceptable behavior based upon unproven theory all the while ignoring science based avenues of study with proven outcomes.  Theirs is not a social science, it is a dogma to be followed with religious fervor.  And treating children as blank slates and forcing them into unnatural gender roles can be damaging to their development.

Boys will be boys, girls will be girls, with a little bit of nurture piled on top of that.  And it is our responsibility to ensure that each one, individually, is allowed many varied experiences and many opportunities so that they can decide what they enjoy and how to be for themselves.  The argument of the weight of nature versus nurture will go on unsettled as individuals don’t fit into any one category.  By definition nurture is to care for and encourage growth and development and I see in neither nature or nurture where it is beneficial to force upon or remove sex based roles upon a person.

 

 

 

 

 

 

What of men’s EQUAL right to reproductive choice?

Before we jump into the morality and start to discuss the “right” of a woman to get an abortion let’s accept the fact that it is now the law of the land. Let’s add the other “reproductive rights” of women to the discussion also.  She has the right of abstinence, to use birth control of her choosing prior to sex,  the “morning after” pill the next day, the right to carry a pregnancy to  term, the right to abandon the baby in a “safe” location without question, the right to place it for adoption, and no obligation to inform the father of any of her decisions.

And of men’s reproductive rights?  Abstinence, condoms, and trust in your partner to be telling the truth about her reproductive status.  As the NYS Court of Appeals has ruled, “a man has no right to reproduction post ejaculation”.  This unequal application of rights and responsibilities of many is codified in judicial opinion.   This is evidenced in multiple court decisions which held men FINANCIALLY responsible for children even where the female sabotaged the condom by putting pin holes in it, “stole” his sperm from a discarded condom or other means, and even when it is taken by means of rape such as a recent case shows us, http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2014/09/02/statutory-rape-victim-child-support/14953965/.   Men who claim they do not want the child of an unintended pregnancy are held responsible anyway, indeed, are even labelled ‘deadbeats” for not “standing up” and accepting paternity.

Recently a bill in the OK legislature has brought the issue of equal rights in reproductive choices to the forefront as the bill would require the approval of the father before a woman is allowed an abortion.  There was an immediate backlash from the left leaning women’s groups, the shout of “my body, my choice” resonating with posts spread all over social media to awake “women” to fight this “injustice”(http://www.csmonitor.com/USA/2017/0214/Oklahoma-lawmakers-debate-bill-requiring-men-s-permission-for-abortion-video?cmpid=FB.).

I felt compelled to post on the CSM Article an opposing view in the form of a question: Do men have no reproductive rights?  We seem to be able to find a father when she wants child support.  So if a man says he doesn’t want to pay for a child of an unwanted pregnancy he is a “deadbeat” but if a women wants to abort that child she is exercising her rights?  A woman who has a child against a mans wishes is again exercising her rights, but a man who would ask that the pregnancy give him the child he wants he is then “forcing” her?  So we’ll just give all reproductive rights to women and disregard that their choices affect the father, the child, and society at large?  And can we say anything about responsibility for these “unwanted” pregnancies when women have so many means of birth control at their disposal?

In addition to the “my body, my choice” and the “women carry the baby” what also followed was a host of “men be responsible” comments, the “HE got HER pregnant” perspective which, ironically, failed to see the irresponsibility of women who find themselves in need of an abortion.   The argument was framed around “her rights” and “his responsibilities” and when pressed both sides of the argument dismissed a man’s reproductive rights as ending at ejaculation, where his responsibility begins for her choice.

Not a single person seems to want to address the issue of how can we say men and women have equal rights when we deny men rights which woman have.  Lost also in the discussion is RESPONSIBILITY for the decisions.  For we see a woman can give away her financial responsibility by giving the child up for adoption or even dropping it off anonymously.  A man suffering an unintended pregnancy is forced to pay for her decision.  Her choice is his being forced to 21 years of income execution, the sacrificing of his body at work without compensation.  A poor woman witt a child gets welfare, a poor man with a child gets a garnished.

Perhaps the worst part of the denial of men’s reproductive rights is the fact that most men don’t walk away from the responsibility of her choice.  Most are like Nick Olivas, our rape victim.  At 14 he was statutorily raped by a 20 year old.  Fast forward 6 years and Olivas learns he has a 6 year old child as he is served with child support papers demanding payments from the time of the child’s birth, even though he was not old enough to consent and was never informed of the existence of the child and allowed to decide to be a part of the child’s life.

Now, at 24 Olivas is trying to be a part of his child’s life stating, “I can’t leave her out there.  She deserves a Dad”.  Here he’s finding out that the state isn’t concerned with a fathers emotional support and raising his children for they consider the financial support as separate from access.  And as he is sure to find out, there are a multitude of means to collect, even incarceration into a debtor prison if he can’t pay.  But there are no avenues to help him with, much less guarantee, his time and emotional support for his child.

And what of a child’s rights?  Is there no right to both parents?  In going after Olivas for financial support the state says they are “doing it for the child”.  Really?  So why didn’t the state demand to know the father up front?  Isn’t a child the product of both parents and doesn’t a child have a right to know both sides of their family tree and both heritages?  Can someone from the state explain how it was in the child’s interest to be denied her father, his love and support, for 6 years, and then to collect retro dollars on her behalf?  I’m waiting for that response?  Why is a fathers dollars more important than his love and nurture?

In arguing for his legislation, Rep. Justin Humphrey stated he believes excluding the man out of these decisions is adding to the break down of society.  Once again a man’s rights and a child’s rights are lost in the discussion and the requirement for the mother to notify the doctor of the child’s father was more to make him responsible than to protect his rights.  His bill did do one thing, it exempted rape from the notification requirement, something we do not do for boys who are raped.

The bill was described as being opposed by “reproductive rights advocates” on unconstitutional grounds.  The regional director of planned parenthood stated that “Oklahoma should trust women to make the choices that are best for them”.  I suspect the choices are made easier when others bear the responsibility for your choices but have no choice themselves.   The article should clarify that the advocates are for a woman’s reproductive choices without regard for the father, child, or society.

But as I read the U.S. Constitution I see it guarantees God given rights to every individual equally.  And so I close with the question, What of men’s EQUAL right to reproductive choice?

 

Remove the Stench from the Bench!

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The New York Men’s Action Network (NY MAN) and the Coalition of Fathers and Families NY, Inc. has for many years asked the parents the question, “are you happy with the system as it currently exists?”  If the answer was no we would encourage people to get involved in the political process and to make sure they registered in a party, vote in the primary and again in the general election. (find general advice on party affiliation, the NYS political process, and grass roots lobbying here http://nymensactionnetwork.org/advocacy-get-active.shtml)

The question would come up on who to vote for if both candidates were equally bad and we would advise to vote out the incumbent.  Or another option would be to write in a name, any name, as a protest vote.  This was especially important when you had only one candidate running and they were bad for men, fathers and families.

In the worst of the worst of political cronyism is when the two major parties would get together and cross endorse one candidate with a Democrat in one district and a Republican in the other, thus each party ensuring their hold on a position.  And in many districts the voter advantage for one party is so high that the other party doesn’t run a candidate and so the primary is the real election.  But here, party loyalty takes hold and most candidates won’t buck their own parties leadership.

Other than for Town Justice in New York State the “rules” limit the judicial positions to a member of the Bar Association.  So we not only have a one party monopoly, it is further limited to just attorneys who are forced to work not only in the party system but also in the court system, both of which would frown on a “maverick” stepping up to buck the system and tell the truth.

But this is family court, a court of equity and one dealing with people.  How is it that attorneys are more qualified to pass judgement on individuals?  Actually one would think that those in the medical or social science fields would be equally if not more so qualified.  And why would we rule out an everyday citizen?  We use a “jury of our peers” to ensure fairness in our criminal courts so why do we exclude these protections in our most important court, the one deciding the fate of our family and of ourselves?

So what’s a person to do?

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Yes, one Doug Smith is running to remove the stench from the bench and we here at NY MAN are encouraging everyone who finds themselves with a one person “race” for Judge, or a two bad person race to write in Doug’s name.  Especially those in Saratoga County in NYS.

No more standing idly by and not voting because you don’t have a good choice or any choice at all.  If you are tired of the stench that the parties keep sending to the bench, let them know you want an open, honest election of qualified persons.

The New York Men’s Action Network has found NO race with an impartial qualified judge not beholden to the system.  As such we endorse DOUG SMITH to REMOVE THE STENCH FROM THE BENCH and ask that you write in his name for judicial positions this coming election day.  By writing in your vote for DOUG SMITH you are letting the NYS Court system that you are NOT happy with their biased and inefficient system which ;lunders family assets all the while tearing them apart.

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If you wish to talk to Doug or to comment on the “REMOVE THE STENCH FROM THE BENCH” You can reach him, FaFNY, and NY MAN online at https://www.facebook.com/groups/Fathers4Kids/.

And remember VOTE for DOUG SMITH to REMOVE THE STENCH FROM THE BENCH!

Guest essay: Omission of certain facts is misinformation

http://poststar.com/news/opinion/guest-essay-omission-of-certain-facts-is-misinformation/article_f3f0f9c6-c531-11e4-94a2-e330e515de79.html

March 07, 2015 8:25 pm

By Jim Hays

In the story, “Warren County District Attorney says violence toward children has worsened recently” (03-01-2015 online edition), District Attorney Kate Hogan states, “Often, the most serious cases occur at the hands of men who have no biological and emotional connection to a child, many times the child’s mother’s boyfriend.”

Unfortunately, this quote is taken out of context, for it fails to identify who abuses and neglects children most, the family makeup and relationship to the child, and how these children end up under the hand of the single mother and mother’s boyfriend. So let’s look at the whole story.

The 2010 Fourth National Incidence Study of Child Abuse and Neglect (NIS-4) once again shows the greatest incidence of child abuse and neglect is perpetrated by “single” mothers” (not living with the biological father), followed by abuse and neglect caused by live-in boyfriends.

The NIS-4 executive summary states “Children living with their married biological parents universally had the lowest rate, whereas those living with a single parent who had a cohabiting partner in the household had the highest rate in all maltreatment categories.”

While the study speaks of single parents, we have a default mother custody rate of more than 85 percent in our family courts in this nation, including here in New York state. So it is single-mother homes with a live-in boyfriend where we have the highest threat of abuse and neglect for children.

Before we can blame the sex of the parent in these single-parent homes, we need to look at how we got so many single mothers with boyfriend homes in the first place. And here, the fact of the matter is that it is the biases of Family Court judges to award sole custody to the mother in more than 85 percent of cases, which removes the parental rights of the father without cause, limits the fathers access to minimal times, and provides no enforcement for interference with the father’s access to his children by the mother or others.

The No. 1 reason a father doesn’t spend more time with his children is the limitations of a court order. No. 2 two is prevention of access by the mother, 50 percent of whom admit to interfering with the father’s access with impunity. This is combined with a system that ignores and dismisses the complaints of a father about abuse or neglect of his child as vindictive before a proper investigation of the facts.

If we look at the best situation for children, we see that not only do children having married biological parents in the home have the lowest abuse and neglect rates, this is followed by unmarried biological parents and then children with biological parents living apart but involved (caparisoning or shared parenting).

Inversely, single mother with mother’s boyfriends and then single-parent homes have the most abuse and neglect of children.

So it is easy to see that in speaking about healthy outcomes of children, DA Hogan is off the mark.

If she wants to do something to protect children, she and her fellow DAs could enforce violations of custody orders just like protection orders and child support orders, with criminal charges for blatant violators.

Then, I suggest she get the book written by the late David Levy of the Children’s Rights Council which summed up the solution to negative child outcomes in the title: “The Best Parent is BOTH Parents.”

James Hays is the treasurer, past president and co-founder of the Coalition of Fathers and Families NY Inc. (www.FaFNY.org), a 501c3 not-for-profit working to keep fathers and families together.