As a parent, it is our responsibility to provide for our children the best we can – emotionally, spiritually and financially. It’s not always easy, right? But we manage somehow.

For most of us, it’s what we signed up for.

Which is why yesterday’s announcement that ‘jobless, Keith McDonald, 25’  who is set to have his tenth child, by the tenth different girl, stuck in my throat.

The Sun stepped forward, in its own inimitable way, and offered to give the guy a break. Of his tubes, that is, and offered a free vasectomy.

McDonald’s reply? “I wouldn’t have that done. I’ve been told I’m too young to have one in case I change my mind in the future.”

Erm, hello! You have ten children by ten different women!

It’s not the amount of children I have most issue with. It’s that he pays £5 per week for these children.

Yes, you read that right. £5 per week.

The benefits bill that the taxpayer is landed with is estimated to amount to £1million by the time his children reach 16. Personally, I think that’s an under-estimation.

This story raises so many issues. Ethical, moral, financial, emotional. Questions it seems McDonald seems happy to ignore as he continues to sow his seed.

The answer may well lie in this man’s childhood. Lack of attention? Love? Who knows. Either way, it’s no excuse, as the situation still remains that ten children will be raised by a woman on her own, aided by the state, and McDonald will, no doubt, continue to procreate.

What of the women involved?  Gullible at best.

My question is this? Should the State intervene? And if so, how?

Would fining him help? No doubt he’d get the State to pay – a little ironic, no? Imprison him? At least he’d be unable to father any more children. Until he got out, that is.

Force him to have a vasectomy?

Do we give him the benefit of the doubt in the hope that he will see sense?

I am a firm believer in freedom of choice. I believe people should have the right to live their lives as they wish – but even I have trouble with this story because this cycle will just continue to perpetuate itself unless there is some sort of intervention.

What ‘ideal’ will these children strive for in their lives as they grow up? Will his sons father ten children themselves and walk away because taxpayers will foot the bill, and because their father did? Will the girls settle for any jobless moron that shows them some attention before he moves on to the next gullible girl?

Welfare benefits should be given to those truly in hardship – not socially irresponsible members of society like McDonald who, by the way, also claims incapacity benefit for a ‘bad back.’

It seems like his back was just fine on at least ten occasions.

I hope Messrs Cameron and Clegg stay true to their word and follow through with the supposed crackdown on ‘benefit scroungers’ so that taxpayers’ money can be spent on the people who have fallen on hard times and need a helping hand the most.

Otherwise, the likes of McDonald will see it as a green light to continue living his life in the manner he sees fit – regardless of the ramifications for the next generation.

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Published by Kate Sutton

Writer, Mother, Dater.