With the suit, NCM hopes to establish that a man who unintentionally
fathers a child has the right to decline financial responsibility for
that child, a right based on the same principles laid out in the 1973
case that made abortion legal…
The NCM has been looking for an appropriate plaintiff for this case
for more than 10 years. It finally found one in Matt Dubay…who claims he and
his ex-girlfriend did not use birth control because of her assurances
that she could not get pregnant due to a medical condition. But the
couple, who Dubay told Salon were together for about three months, did
conceive, and Dubay’s ex elected to keep the child, for whom he now
pays $500 a month in child support, despite his contention that he was
always clear about not wanting the child.
Save your moralizing, let’s do tax incidence theory. If you were a woman and wanted an unwilling father, or at least wasn’t trying too hard to avoid one, what kind of guy would you pick? Smart, not a criminal, tall, high-earning, and possibly nerdy. You also would pick a flexible, mild-mannered guy, on the grounds that he might grow to like the idea of parenthood (there is some chance you will decide to keep him in the picture).
If financial responsibility could be repudiated, these guys would find it harder to get quality sex. This is a simple economic principal: change the terms at one end of a deal, and they shift back at the other end. The ex-cons, who will take off in any case and are known to have this quality, would not be penalized. They might get even more sex.
Now which of the nerdy guys will suffer the most from holding greater "reproductive rights"? The risk-loving, sex-crazed nerds who like to sleep with strange women and are willing to chance paternity (just rolls off the tongue, doesn’t it?). And the nerds who know they are sterile or vasectomized. Did I mention the nerd who doesn’t much mind a bit of financial (and other kinds of) servitude? No longer will these guys be viewed as potential appealing "victims."
Who will mind this change the least? The local dullard — you went to high school with him but hoped you never had to marry him — who wants to settle down with a wife and family, but otherwise faced competition from the smarter nerd tricked or lured into siring a kid.
The bottom line: This change would be a tax on male nerd sex. It would boost male nerd autonomy, but which of these do nerds need more?
No, one data point does not test a theory, especially when that data point is selected for purposes of national image. Nonetheless here is a photo of Matt Dubay, computer technician. Here is a video of Matt. Prior to the paternity suit, Matt had owned his dream car, a 1998 Trans Am.