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[AKidsRight.Org] "When is someday Daddy?" -- How do we bring reform closer.

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From: John Murtari (
Date: Wed Aug 04 2004 - 12:17:26 EDT

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Good People & People of Faith,

When my son, Domenic (11), asked me that, "Daddy, when is someday?"
When can we be together, live a normal life in our home?  We were
driving down the road ...  I didn't have a brilliant answer (imagine
that -- at a loss for words!). All I said was, "I don't know when."

As an NCP (Non Custodial Parent), with a child who was relocated to
the other side of the country (all in his 'best interest' of course)
-- I do have one thing to be very thankful for.  A six week block of
vacation time in the summer.  In six weeks you can forget about all
the "junk" and settle into a normal life.  As if being together was
the kind of thing you could do all the time.  Imagine that!

I'm glad Dom can understand what "Daddy does" and that I could explain
a Federal Judge will soon be sentencing me on a series of arrests --
all for peacefully petitioning Senator Hillary Clinton for a meeting
with parents regarding the need for serious reform.  Normally, by the
time he leaves after our summer break, I already have plane tickets
for my fall visit to see him -- Could not this time as I explained,
"I'm going to have to wait till the end of my jail sentence and I
don't know how long that is going to be."  (Details at
http://www.AKidsRight.Org/actionc_syr )

We have both learned to live in the "present."  I read some of your
stories and I just cringe, we've had some powerful stuff recently
posted at our Hall of Shame, http://www.AKidsRight.Org/shame.htm --
check it out, your story is welcome.  Dom and I have a LOT to be
thankful for -- and we both know that!

BACK TO THE BASICS: When is someday?  When will reform happen?
Do any of you have that date written down?  Let me know.  But I have
some thoughts on what will bring it closer to being real:

* When we act (not talk) with Faith, Hope, and Love.

Please, don't turn off because of the "Faith" word.  Yes, it does
included Faith in a Loving God, but also Faith in our cause and what
we believe in -- how many of us have become more 'realistic' in our
goals for reform?

I read messages (as have many of you), where people speak in bold
language about GREAT rights being violated and terrible horrors being
visited on our families -- but not too much about action?

I've read a LOT of history -- and name me a single GREAT human right
that was won on the power of words alone (and yes, words are still a
part of any reform effort)?

* Freedom against slavery.
* Freedom of religion.
* Freedom of speech.
* Freedom to ride in the front of the bus.
* Freedom to vote.

* Freedom to be an EQUAL parent?
  (Free from government interference, whether that be from 
   divorce, separation, or child abuse allegations).

Does that last one belong on top in your list?  The others required
tremendous struggles, people died, sometimes violence.  NO violence is
required in our struggle for Family Law reform, but I don't believe we
can escape the need for that same personal sacrifice?  Do you?

How else do I (a non interested member of the public) change my mind?
It is a cliche -- but your actions speak louder than your words. In
the past a lot of GOOD people were AGAINST all those items in the list
above, and they had GOOD reasons.

Just think back 50 years ago in the United States.  You could have
encountered GOOD people walking out of Alabama Church services:

* The WHITE people would have been more than happy to explain why
* blacks must sit in the back of the bus, and pee in a different
* bathroom, and go to a different school .... just common sense!

* The BLACK people would have been happy to explain how wrong it was,
* but that was the way it was and it might never change -- and if it
* did, it would be a LONG time in coming .... just common sense!

Read something real about the NonViolent Action practiced my Martin
Luther King, http://www.AKidsRight.Org/civil_back.htm

Today, it is hard for us to conceive of those attitudes held by so
many just a few years ago. But how many of us feel the same way --
that real reform will never happen?  That EQUAL parenting is a pie in
the sky?  Just common sense!

Each of us both as a member of a group and as leaders of groups
concerned with reform should think about this.  Many people cry about
a lack of unity in Family Court reform.  It really shouldn't be any
surprise, because so far most of what we "do" is "talk" -- when real
"actions" begin to take place that capture the public imagination,
then things will become more focused.

As "leaders" and "followers" we must strive to keep the GOAL BIG (on
the top of the list)!  How many people would be willing to sacrifice
their livelihood to support a bill calling for 

* "A rebuttable presumption of shared parenting when a Judge finds it
  to be in the best interest of the child"

* "A bill to require a few more procedure modifications and more
  sensitivity training before a social worker can show up at your
  house and take your kids away because of suspected abuse."

One public action movement that has actual made national press
worldwide is the group Fathers-4-Justice,

They have superheroes arrested! Read about Spiderman being found 
not guilty by a Jury at:

BUT -- what about that name, "Fathers..." -- is it just a Dad thing?
Moms, are you eager to join the group?  Wouldn't it be greater if we
could have not just Spiderman willing to sacrifice, but also Wonder
Woman!  I sure could use a few super heroes to help me outside the
offices of Senator Clinton!

Most of us know this one. Just take the opposites.  When we act with
despair, lack of confidence, and hatred.  No need to explain here --
we have all spent some time on those paths....

Let's make it happen sooner!

                                       John Murtari
Coordinator                            AKidsRight.Org
jmurtari@AKidsRight.Org                "A Kid's Right to BOTH parents"
Toll Free (877) 635-1968(x-211)        http://www.AKidsRight.Org/
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