Wisconsin lawmaker introduces controversial bill
If you’re raising children without the benefit of a spouse, did you know you’re committing an act of child abuse? That’s what one Wisconsin lawmaker believes, anyway.
State Sen. Glenn Grothman (R-West Bend) has introduced a bill redefining child abuse to state that “nonmarital parenthood” is a “contributing factor to child abuse and neglect.” State Rep. Donald Pridemore (R-Hartford) co-sponsored the bill.
According to Chicagoist, the law would affect not only the state’s single parents, but also non-married couples and same-sex couples. Grothman has continuously run on the “family values” issue, saying that the “breakdown of the family” is America’s biggest problem, claiming that the “Left and the social welfare establishment” encourage single parenthood because the children in those situations “are far more likely to be dependent on the government.”
Grothman states some of the tools the government supposedly use to promote “out of wedlock” births are programs such as low-income housing assistance, subsidized day care, food stamps, and energy assistance.
According to WEAU, the bill has some single parents seething.
“I think single parents have a bad rap as it is,” says Amanda Shilts, who became a single teen mother at 15. “You get this look of pity when people look at you like you’re a single parent that’s so hard, do you really have to tie one more negative thing to it like abuse?”
But Grothman insists single parenting is detrimental, saying it “creates a situation where abuse is much more likely to occur.”
And while he acknowledged that there are good single parents in the world, he added, “Never the less, statistics will show it is a risk factor.”
The Lacrosse Tribune reports that state Rep. Chris Taylor (D-Madison) said at a public hearing that the bill’s progress in the legislature was a “real shame.”
“I know there’s a lot of other people out there and a lot of groups that work on the issue of child abuse who would be here today if they had some time to get here and testify against this,” Taylor added.