With members nationwide, including some from Ohio, there is clearly a backlash of loosely organized men who have joined together to fight perceived favoritism toward woman, especially when it comes to family law issues. This may be generically referred to as the men's rights movement. One thing that the movement wants is a presumption of joint custody in child custody cases.
The men generally share one sentiment: they believe that women’s rights have gone too far, and that the system of child custody laws and procedures has become mired in favoritism. Thus, a hodge-podge collection of about 150 men met in the last week of June in a neighboring state to hold a three-day conference regarding their issues. In an article in Time written by a female feminist writer, the author reports on her three days at the conference.
It appears that all or most of the articles reviewing the meeting are similar to the one in Time. Written by women, all of the reporting consists of responses that seem to echo remarkably similar messages. They thus focus on countering certain men’s issues, while conceding others that were discussed at the conference.
They all conclude that the men display a marked emotional hatred of women, and rightly see that as a major obstacle, assuming that it's true. However, the men do have at least one interest that seems to ring true. The primary goal of having fathers involved in their children’s lives after a breakup is a value presumably shared by all men and women of good will. If anything was ever found to be genuinely supportive of the children's best interests, it would be the preserving of an active relationship between each parent and the children.
The men's claim that the system is structured to keep men out of their children’s lives may be true for some men. The debate is still in its early stages, leaving some time ahead to analyze and evaluate how to resolve the conflicts. The main emphasis of the movement must be to facilitate better child custody relationships between both parents and the children where appropriate. In Ohio and elsewhere, the beneficiaries of such progress must be the children themselves.
Source: TIME, "What I Learned as a Woman at a Men's-Rights Conference", Jessica Roy, July 2, 2014