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Planting the SEED of a VISION

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From: John Murtari (
Date: Fri Jun 29 2001 - 10:52:45 EDT

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Good People (and particularly members of AKidsRight.Org),

This is Part I of a personal message with a single topic:
Planting the SEED of a VISION. 

A repeated theme I hear from so many parents is, "When are all these
different groups going to get together? When will we be able to speak
with a single voice?"

Well, we just don't seem to be ready for that yet. Did you hear about
the rally held in Washington, D.C. for Mother's Day.  To raise
consciousness about how their right to be a parent had been
violated... Let me know if I missed it -- but there wasn't one.

How about the rally in Washington, D.C. for Father's Day. There were
fewer people than the year before. Last year we got to march down the
middle of Pennsylvania Avenue -- this year we didn't get to that (the
rules are you have to have at least 75 people).

Can I not be "roasted" for saying at times I was a bit embarassed by
the some of the things I saw while I was there? I walked next to a
good man who was carrying a hand drawn sign, it showed a Judge looking
a bit like Count Dracula -- and the message at the bottom was "Why do
you think they wear black robes?"  Talked to another good person, a
leader of a group, who told me it was "okay to lie" to your former
spouse, after all "everybody lies." Asked another good person who was
absolutely rabid about the way Courts have violated our rights, "Would
you be willing to sacrifice a night in jail to support your idea..."
The answer was, "No, why should I?"

If you are involved in a "group."  Ask yourself about the goal your
group has. Is it big enough?  Is the VISION strong enough?  I really
believe the issue is Civil Rights, and no Civil Rights movement has
succeeded without sacrifice and a positive VISION. 

Most discouraging was telling some of the folks there, "You know, we
really should do this for Mother's & Father's Day next year, get
people committed to coming to both events."  I got blank stares.

========== Planting the SEED of a VISION ========

We obviously don't have a common vision of what we want. The majority
of us are just plain angry and hurt and we know we don't like that!
We know who hurt us, a Judge, Lawyer, Child Protective, or former
spouse -- and we don't like them!

Try this on for a VISION:

"You have a God given right to nurture your own children. It is the
MOST valuable right you have. More valuable than liberty, more
valuable than freedom of speech. Your children were not "licensed" to
you by some office of government . . . We need to give that right the
strongest protections our society has (presently used to protect
liberty).  The presumption you are a fit parent. If government wishes
to threaten that, it must convince a Jury, beyond a reasonable doubt,
a unanimous verdict from twelve of your peers -- that you are a threat
to your child's safety."

I think it passes the "would make a difference" test.  We have a lot
of horror stories on our Hall of Shame
(http://www.AKidsRight.Org/shame.htm) and the common theme is one or
two "officials" who thought YOU were a bad parent and had the power
(which we as a people have allowed them to assume) -- to cut you off
from your children.  It is clear that in over 90% of those cases, the
need to convince a Jury, would have stopped any action.

This may sound new to a lot of you (and you have good company), look
at these words from Congressman James Walsh (R-Syracuse, NY): 

"parental rights is clearly a state legislative and judicial matter
...  this issue is best handled through state courts and legislatures
across the country ... federal intervention would be impossible at
this time.  States would also be unlikely to give up their
jurisdiction on such matters."  
(full text at http://www.AKidsRight.Org/action_syr)

Some folks are "suspicious" of govenment and like to say "we don't
need any more laws."  But I can heartily assure you, Thomas Jefferson,
would be amazed about our lack of direction.  Our Constitution gives
ultimate power to the people (to the consent of the governed). He
would think we were silly waiting for a Court decision (and he
probably wouldn't wait for the State of New Jersey either). If you
have to, just amend the Constitution so that your Family Rights are
recognized and protected...

=====  What is stopping this VISION -- we are!  ======

Think about some of the following. They are not EASY situations!

A common quote which is used to justify our present Jury system in
criminal law is, "better to release 9 guilty people, than to condemn
one innocent person."  What do you think of that?  Remember
O.J. Simpson?

What about things that go on behind closed doors in a home: We are
sure she is abusing her children (or at least that's what the
psychologist says!) -- yeah, we don't have the proof to convince a
jury. But we "know" we are doing the right thing. Better safe than
sorry!  Better to separate 10 children from parents, than to let one
live in a home with abuse! (or are we abusing all ten now?)

How can I share custody with my spouse?  He won't make our daughter
practice on her piano lessons (she doesn't like it right now) -- she
is being deprived the proper preparation for a musical career. (deprived
of career or parent?)

If I could move a thousand miles away I could get an excellent job
making a lot more money, our child would have a nicer house --
obviously our daughter should live with me, and her mom can come
visit.  Why should I have to give up my career, isn't that my RIGHT?
Why should I have to stay in the local area, the Court should just
give my daughter to me!  I have more money, I'm better educated --
doesn't my child have the RIGHT to live with the better parent? Why
should she be deprived? (do I have to be better or live up to a higher
standard because of separation?  Do children get to pick their
parents -- I think we made that decision for them.)

I think the founding Fathers realized there are limits to what
"justice" can do and that government can't fix everything without
doing a lot more damage than good.

NEXT WEEK -- Part II (Watering the SEED).
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