sam's notes

notes on government, sports and popular culture

Friday, March 24, 2006

.....Interesting but strange N.Y. Times article on the rights of unwed fathers when their babies are put up for adoption.

The federal solution solution comes from Sen. Mary Landrieu, who will introduce the Proud Father Act, legislation which would create a national registry for unwed fathers who might wish to claim paternity rights.

While state-run registries are a patchwork of regulations, common complaints among unwed fathers are the bureuacratic obstacles to registering plus the narrow window of time to register after the birth of a baby, anywhere from 5-30 days.

Not to mention the cramp on guys' sex lives:

"Erik Smith.....was naturally intrigued when he heard of the Ohio registry in a class where the professor explained that babies born to unwed parents can be adopted without the father's consent if he did not register within 30 days after the birth."

"'I asked if that meant that, to protect his rights, a man should register every time he has sex with a new partner, and he said yes,' Mr Smith said."

Then this from Adam Pertman, executive director of the Evan B. Donaldson Adoption Institute:

"It's all smoke and mirrors. How can registries work if no one's heard of them? And it's not just reasonable to expect that men will register every time they have sex."

I wouldn't think so, even if the federal government provides the service. So the answer seems to be quit having sex out of wedlock or chalk adoption disputes up as one of the many risks you assume when you do.


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