Since 1973, when the U.S. Commissioners on Uniform Laws proposed the Uniform Parentage Act (UPA), which has been adopted by 18 U.S. states, the common law marital paternity presumption that holds that a child born during a marriage is the offspring of the husband, has been complemented by presuming the mother’s husband to be the natural father of a child if the child is born during the marriage or within 300 days after the marriage is terminated, unless his fatherhood has been rebutted by clear and convincing evidence. The revised UPA, published in 2000, retained all of the original presumptions related to marriage, but replaced the clear and convincing evidence standard for rebutting an assumption of paternity with the provision that the presumption of natural fatherhood may be rebutted “only by admissible results of genetic testing excluding that man as the father of the child or identifying another man as the father of the child.” Despite the new emphasis on genetic testing, both the newly revised UPA and most state laws and courts rely on the best interests of the child in determining paternity, whether by upholding the right to refuse genetic tests if it is determined they are not in the best interest of the child, or by requiring that the best interests of the child be taken into account after the genetic testing determines paternity. But other states have passed legislation that allows men proven by DNA testing not to be the father of a child to be released from child support payments.
In sum, promotion of the best interests of the child through the marital paternity presumption empowers feminism by underwriting female promiscuity with a guarantee of child support levied against the cuckolded husband. By contrast, fathers’ right movement that opposes legal accommodations of paternity fraud, qualifies as reactionary antifeminism. In so far as feminism is the belief that women should be as free from the economic consequences of their sexuality as men, no one can be a feminist without denying the interest of children to be supported by their biological fathers and the right of men to be free of supporting fraudulent paternity.