In 1995, GOP Presidential hopeful and brother and son of W. and H.W. respectively, published a book entitled Profiles in Character. According to the Huffington Post, there is a chapter entitled “The Restoration of Shame.” In it he laments that young people are shirking their parental responsibilities because they have “no reason to feel shame”:
One of the reasons more young women are giving birth out of wedlock and more young men are walking away from their paternal obligations is that there is no longer a stigma attached to this behavior, no reason to feel shame. Many of these young women and young men look around and see their friends engaged in the same irresponsible conduct. Their parents and neighbors have become ineffective at attaching some sense of ridicule to this behavior. There was a time when neighbors and communities would frown on out of wedlock births and when public condemnation was enough of a stimulus for one to be careful.
In 2001, as Governor of Florida, Jeb Bush allowed a law to go into effect requiring single women planning to put their infants up for adoption to publish the names of every sexual partner they may have had that may be the father of the infant(s) in question. It was dubbed the “Scarlet Letter” law. The bill was intended to notify potential fathers in the event that the father was willing and able to take responsibility of raising the child that he conceived.
In addition to the names of the fathers, the women were also required to publish in newspapers the dates and places of sexual acts that may have caused the conception of the child as well as disclosing their own names, ages, height, weight, hair and eye color, race and the child’s name and birth place. And a description of the possible father(s) . The ads were required to run once per week for a month in the community or communities that they believe that children were conceived.
Not surprisingly, this law was later found unconstitutional.
In 2003 that law was repealed and replaced with a new law that established a “Father Registry” for men to register if they believe that they may be the father of a child. Conversely, the fathers would have to register, providing the name, address and physical description of the mother as well as the date and place(s) where they believed that the conception may have taken place, in order to preserve and protect their parental rights.
At the time Howard Simon of Florida’s ACLU was quoted as saying:
Only a male-dominated legislature could possibly pass a law that facilitates adoptions by requiring public humiliation of women.
In 2003, The New York Times reported that Charlotte Danciu, a Bacon Raton attorney who represented four women and two minor in a suit against the legislation as saying:
I had a woman come to me who had a child 10 years ago while in college and now her husband of five years wants to adopt her child and in order to do that she had to put her name, her daughter’s name and all the men she slept with in college in her college newspaper.
Huffington Post also points out that Jeb Bush is an advocate for publicly shaming children and students and people on public assistance, even saying something–in writing, in his book–that, “For many, it is more shameful to work than to take public assistance — that is how backward shame has become!”
Is THIS the person we want running our country? Just say NO to Jeb Bush in 2016–or ever.
I wonder what his wife and children have to say about this line of thinking.
Featured image from NBCMiami.