by Steven Ertelt
July 19, 2006
Lansing, MI (LifeNews.com) — A judge has dismissed a lawsuit filed by a man who doesn’t want to pay child support for his ex-girlfriend’s baby. The man filing the suit says men should have the same rights as women do under Roe v. Wade to exempt themselves from responsibilities for a child they don’t want to support.
Matthew Dubay, a 25 year-old computer programmer from Michigan, says that if women have the right to have an abortion and end their responsibility for an unborn child, men should have the same right.
With the help of a men’s rights organization, he filed suit to terminate his responsibility for paying child support for his ex-girlfriend’s daughter. He also said his former girlfriend, Lauren Wells, had told him she was unable to get pregnant and that she knew he didn’t want to become a father.
But U.S. District Judge David Lawson ruled the lawsuit was frivolous and threw it out. He also ordered Dubay to pay attorney’s fees to the state.
Lawson disagreed with Dubay’s argument that Michigan’s paternity laws violate the Constitution’s equal protection clause. He said the law is unconstitutional because it requires fathers to pay child support "even if he did not want the child to be born."
"The fundamental flaw in Dubay’s claim is that he fails to see that the state played no role in the conception or birth of the child in this case, or in the decisions that resulted in the birth of the child," Lawson wrote, according to an AP report.
Lawson also wrote that chivalry may not be dead but said Dubay’s case injures it.
Despite the ruling, Dubay says he plans to continue to fight for his suit.
"I heard that the way the judge dismissed the case was sarcastic," Dubay told AP in response to the decision. "I’m disappointed in the system for not taking it seriously."
"We still have a few options," he added. "I’ll discuss it with my lawyer and a few other people and hopefully we will come up with the best course of action. I don’t feel that it should end right there. I feel it’s a fair argument and I’d like to see it argued in court. I’m disappointed we didn’t get that opportunity."
He said he didn’t hear about the decision until a local newspaper called him for a comment.
Wells gave birth to a girl last year and Dubay was ordered to pay $500 per month for the child’s welfare.
Michigan Attorney General Mike Cox eventually intervened in the case and argued for its dismissal.
The National Center for Men, which is helping Dubay in the case, has nicknamed the lawsuit the Roe v. Wade for men.
"This feels like the judge just slammed the door in Matt’s face," said Mel Feit, the group’s director. "The case wasn’t litigated. Shame on him for doing that. That showed bias against Matt."