By LINDON DODD
“Child support is a woman’s last chance to get her Baby Daddy back.” — Anonymous quote
I was talking with a 19-year-old lady this week who was discussing her family situation. In referring to the father of her child she used the term, “My baby daddy.” I stopped her and told her I did not find that an acceptable term. She then carefully rephrased her statement, “I mean the father of my child.”
I thanked her.
I will no longer accept the slang terms “baby momma," “baby daddy” and “baby bump” as a part of my vocabulary. And I will correct anyone who uses it in conversation. I find the terms disgusting, insulting and disrespecting in any reference to the human life that is a child.
What we have now is a generation that finds the creation of human life a flippant endeavor. Any abstract thought of marriage among a certain part of our culture as relating to creating human life is not even an afterthought.
Such terminology not only reflects a lack of respect for a human life, but for me also is a sign of having no self-respect. In addition, it tends to reflect a serious misconception of the responsibility and obligation one has when deciding to bring a child into this world.
I feel that in part due to the celebrity culture and role models of our younger people having babies out of wedlock and with no intention of creating anything resembling a family, some find it almost a clique thing. While there used to be a level of shame or stigma attached, it is now the acceptable the thing to do.
Don’t let me mislead you. There have always been accidental and unplanned pregnancies. The biggest difference I see today is that unplanned pregnancies are now planned or at least there is no plan to avoid it. Everybody’s doing it.
What almost invariably is the result are people with kids and no means of support or even an intention to consider something like a job, career or marriage. Just whip on down to sign up for the WIC, ADC and welfare check. In several cases of which I am familiar even if the couple decides to stay together they won’t marry because of the possibility of losing their government checks.
And there is way more acceptances of the middle class and upper middle class to have their kids sign up for programs that would have once brought a level of shame to the family name.
There was a time when accepting a government check of any kind was an admission of failure and a bit of personal embarrassment came along with using one for any purpose. Now, it seems like a badge of honor. Why not have two or three; or even a litter of kids with absolutely no personal responsibility to try and make a living to afford to raise them.
I have absolutely no objection to some programs that are meant to get people through a short-term financial strain. I support government sponsored educational or job training programs that could be effective in preparing people for a transition from government aid to a self-sustaining career.
That’s not what I am seeing increasingly. While I am no prude having a baby is supposed to be the sequel to planning a life together. When people begin breeding like stray dogs with no plan there becomes an ever eroding base to support the fundamental economics of our society. When more people are on the dole than paying into it we will become a self-destructive nation.
In these “baby momma” and “baby daddy” cultures what we will surely see in the next generation are an ever increasing percentage of new participants in government entitlement programs. It’s a drag that our economy cannot afford to support and stay healthy.
Another aspect of this culture finds ever increasing numbers of young people, unmarried with kids who are uneducated, unmotivated, and living in drug-induced euphoria’s raising their kids; or more precisely, not raising their kids with any care or responsible behavior. These kids will certainly not be able to raise themselves.
If you want to think I am an alarmist I simply ask you to talk with anyone in the legal/judicial system, who is a child care worker, or any police officer who works the streets. Ask them how many drug busts are accompanied by finding young children in a room full of strung out adults. I am not talking about your hippie grandpa’s pot smoking.
Newt Gringrich and I were almost polar in our political views. The one thing he and I agreed upon but for which he was pilloried publicly had to do with his proposal to bring back orphanages and children’s homes. These kids need to be in a stable environment with educational opportunities. I disagree with people who think there is no substitute for being with natural parents when the natural parents are now doing no real parenting without any plans to parent in the future. In my opinion we are being cruel to these children not to take them out of harmful circumstances and give them a fighting chance at having a normal, successful life.
If the neglectful parents do grow up, dry up, and make a real life for themselves, I am all for giving them a second chance. I think we are guilty as a society for not taking kids out of what are obviously dangerous and unsustainable environments. And after so many babies are born to anyone who has no visible means of support I am willing to stop the checks coming directly to such irresponsible people and putting them toward an alternative means to give the children what every kid deserves.
I personally would support castration and sterilization in extreme cases.
The “baby mama” and “baby daddy” generation is posing a real danger for our country. I refuse to accept the life growing inside someone as a “baby bump.” Anyone who thinks so little of themselves and another human life might as well refer to themselves as sperm donors and egg receptacles.
— Lindon Dodd is a freelance writer who can be reached at email@example.com