Saturday, April 18, 2009

Please Baby Baby Please

After nine months of calm requests, pleading, angry remonstrations, a bounced check (his) for $400 at the daycare, and detective work worthy of "The Wire" - it arrived: The letter containing the date for an administrative hearing for child support.

His manager (he is a musician) was shocked and alarmed by my actions. Didn't I realize that I was effectively sentencing him to jail!? Didn't I realize that this was my fault for having a child with him in the first place. Surely, I must have known that he was irresponsible! Can't we agree just agree to settle this outside of court? Court systems in the U.S. are biased against black men! The manager then went on to tell me the story of his friend Sean and how I needed to be more compassionate so this would not happen to my ex. And then he emailed this:

*Names and places have been changed to protect the triflin*

Mr. X requests a negotiated settlement in-lieu of court
ordered child support. He asks that you accept the following terms:

1) A halt to the court proceedings scheduled with X County related to child support.

2) One hundred dollars per month in child support paid

3) Visitation at childcare center

Mr. X requests that the monthly
payments begin May 25, 2009. If these terms are agreeable please indicate so by
your own writing, your signature, and the date of your signature.

Respectfully Yours,

Lest, this post be taken as yet another bash against black men, I should make it clear that I personally had and know many great fathers. I believe that no matter the marital status of the parents, children benefit greatly from having a relationship with their father.

There are those that that try to infantilize black men and "Sapphirize" black women when it comes to the issue of child support: Jimi Izrael this means you!!! Mr. Izrael wrote an article about Sean Levert (yes, the manager's friend) and his tragic death. Unfortunately, this article was yet another diatribe against "baby's mommas" and their gold digging aspirations. To be fair, he does state that he takes issue with parents who won't pay child support, but supports those who can't pay the amount awarded. Having read other articles of his that have a decidedly misogynistic bent to them - I take this with a large chunk of salt.

One comment ranted that single moms need to stop being lazy. Mr. Man, you try working 40+ hours per week, paying for rent, utilities, food, gas, car payment, car insurance, car maintenance, student loan, daycare, health care, clothes and god forbid - a Happy Meal. Spare me the "welfare queen" stories.

Mr. Izrael, you can keep the pacifer -I'll take the child support.

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