The Wages of Genetic Entitlement: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly in the Rape Survivor Child Custody Act
Northwestern University Law Review Online
Jennifer S. Hendricks, The Wages of Genetic Entitlement: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly in the Rape Survivor Child Custody Act, 112 Nw. U. L. Rev. Online 75 (2017), http://scholarlycommons.law.northwestern.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1252&context=nulr_online, available at http://scholar.law.colorado.edu/articles/827/.
This Essay analyzes flaws and assumptions in the recently enacted Rape Survivor Child Custody Act. The RSCCA offers a window into the problems with defining parenthood in terms of genes instead of caretaking relationships, which is what led to the problem of rapists being able to claim parental rights in the first place. Rather than address that underlying defect in family law, the statute attempts a solution that might work if all rapists were strangers, all rapists were men, and all rape victims were women, but glosses over complicated problems of violence and coercion in relationships. Despite this failure to grapple with hard cases, the RSCCA helps us see how the biological processes of reproduction are necessarily intertwined with the definition of legal parenthood.
Copyright protected. Use of materials from this collection beyond the exceptions provided for in the Fair Use and Educational Use clauses of the U.S. Copyright Law may violate federal law. Permission to publish or reproduce is required.
Constitutional Law Commons, Criminal Law Commons, Family Law Commons, Law and Gender Commons, Legislation Commons, State and Local Government Law Commons