Chicago Rally, the new F4J, Kate Gosselin, what you would say at hearings?

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From: John Murtari (
Date: Tue Apr 13 2010 - 11:42:51 EDT

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Good People & People of Faith,

A lot of stories below from the last few weeks.  It's enough to make
your head spin!  It seems clear to me that before we can really make
progress on reform -- we need to work on establishing a firm consensus
on what we want and what principles guide us.  For our group:

If you were invited to legislative hearings on reform -- what would
you say in 250 words or less?  Send it in and I'll share your
responses in the next message!  My response at the bottom.

1. Chicago Rally - report & pictures.
2. Re-Launch of Fathers-4-Justice - go UK& CA! What about US?
3. Kate Gosselin - still a FIT & EQUAL parent.
4. Son files harassment against Mom - I have rights!!!?
5. Children Have Rights Too - what are they?
6. UK TV show/Videos of Family separations - gut wrenching.
7. Tennessee Lawmakers want to impose 50/50 split - awful!?
8. If they held hearings & I was invited - I'd say?

1. Chicago Rally - report & pictures
[Interesting reports below.  If you want to be considered an EQUAL
parent, why ask for a minimum of 35% of the time with your kids? If
YOU say "Judges are destroying children" (very strong words) -- what
are YOU doing about it? Is carrying a sign enough? Your FEEDBACK
welcome. ]

Examiner.Com story from Teri Stoddard:

Photos/Story (

BLOG report/comment from Stuart Showalter:

From: "DENISE"

When the Illinois Family Law Study Committee met in Chicago this
morning they were greeted by dozens of parents with signs and
banners. Mothers, fathers, aunts, uncles and grandparents hoped to
educate the committee on the suffering that current family law
causes. Participants in the Save Our Families Rally came from as far
away as Indiana and Wisconsin.

The Illinois House of Representatives created the Family Law Study
Committee of family law attorneys, lawmakers, judges and advocacy
leaders to create the next chapter of Illinois Family Law...

Illinois father Bill Sharp described how a family law judge revoked
his equal custody and gave the alienating parent sole custody after
she refused to cooperate with the court order. He reported that the
judge said, "The father should not be upset because this is how it
ends up in 90 per cent of the cases." Both of Sharp's children moved
out of their mother's and into Sharp's house on their 18th birthdays.

A MINIMUM OF 35% TIME SHARE WITH EACH PARENT. When asked if they think
they had an impact, one father said, "The conversation in the room
weighed heavily on our recommendations and they were taken seriously."

"We will no doubt have many more House and Senate committee meetings
to attend. The road to the next chapter in Family Law will be long and
arduous," said Mitchell, "But we are dedicated to being there."

"This nightmare has been going on for six years," JoAnn said, "We want
the kids to know that we never abandoned them." SHE ADDED, "JUDGES

2. Re-Launch of Fathers-4-Justice - go UK & CA! What about US?
When I think of F4J I think of Superheroes for Family Law reform,
wanting to be EQUAL parents to their kids.  I'm not even sure that is
their goal -- really couldn't tell from the web links below.  I'd
always hoped they would be more "Family" and not just "Fathers", but
they certainly have made their web site more inclusive...

There have been so many different rumors & reports in the past. I
honestly don't know what to believe. But Matt O'Connor, the original
founder is back and they are getting National news coverage.  (nice music, pictures, & words)

Making progress in the UK elections, National newspaper report:!/photo.php?pid=5141180&id=404775273803

The most active group of Superheroes right now is in Canada.

Probably the least active Superhero group is here in the United
States: -- it appears the membership has rejected
participating in any potentially illegal stunts.  There are some
rallies/marches planned for 2010.

NOTE: I think each of these groups is functionally independent from
the others.

3. Kate Gosselin - still a FIT & EQUAL parent.
It's always magnified when it happens on TV.  An article from People

Now husband Jon wants "Primary" custody because Kate is an 'absent'
parent with all her TV work.  I've also heard she was willing to pose
for Playboy (they turned her down).

Just for discussion, assuming they were presumed EQUAL parents -- does
being absent (as long as the kids are taken care of during your time),
or even being in Playboy change that?

Many people have signed the Declaration of Family Rights (including me!),

I think Kate is FIT & EQUAL. I do also support that Jon should be
EQUAL.  Your thoughts?

4. Son files harassment against Mom - I have rights!!!?
Here is an interesting one from Arkadelphia, Arkansas -- I was amazed
to see the DA actually file charges against Mom. I'm sure he thought
it would be in the 'best interest' of the child?

Who knew?  As a kid I always thought the purpose of my parents was to
harass me?!  Don't I have FREEDOM of religion?  Don't I have FREEDOM
of speech? Can't I have my own friends? They said no! Your thoughts?

5. Children Have Rights Too - what are they?
[ I saw this on Facebook, went to the website and didn't know what
to make of it? Short of a criminal trial, with rules of evidence
and a tough standard of proof and a jury of your peers -- how do
you know anyone is abusive?]

    "If you are a NON-ABUSIVE PROTECTIVE PARENT who feels your child
    is the one who is suffering most of all and truly needs to be
    heard, please contact us today."

6. UK TV show/videos of Family separations - gut wrenching.
[ This was tough to watch and brought tears to me eyes in the first
few moments.  Excellent quality.  Beautiful children going through a
disaster!  I'm not sure what it is about the British accents, but it
made it even more convincing & horrible...  It brought back the
memories... It was titled 'Who needs Fathers?'  I would have liked
'Who needs both Parents?' ]

From: "Brian Jones" <>


7. Tennessee Lawmakers want to impose 50/50 split - awful!?
[ The following was an interesting story.  I don't think the
ParentingNewsNetwork supports FIT & EQUAL parents and what a "spin"
they put on some legislation most of us would support. 

You may change your mind after reading this -- after all, who would
FORCE little children to spend more time with a parent they didn't
want to see?  Don't these little ones have RIGHTS?  Shouldn't WE (the
government) do what is BEST FOR THE CHILD? ]

8. If they held hearings & you were invited - you'd say?
[ Here is mine in 250 words or less!  How about yours - send it in! ]

A child has a right to be with their parents, a parent has a right to
be with their child.  As one of our most important Civil rights -- it
should not depend on what State you live in or a local law. I am NOT
calling for MORE FEDERAL INTERFERENCE, but less. The recognition of
established constitutional protections to protect families. There
ought to be a "significant barrier" the system has to cross before
they can interfere with family life.

When a child is born, both biological parents have a right to
know. Fit parents decide what is in the 'best interests' of their
children. Good, average, & poor parents are Fit & Equal parents.

A child does NOT have a right to pick a preferred parent. A child does
NOT have a right to parents who always act in the child's best

Parents have a right to be presumed Fit & Equal (equal in terms of
both physical and legal custody).

If anyone (a spouse, relative, social services) wishes to challenge
these rights, parent's have:

1) The right to counsel.

2) The right to be presumed a fit parent, innocent, and deserving of
an equal relationship with your kids.

3) The right to protection of a criminal jury. The "state" needs to
prove you were a demonstrated serious and intentional threat to your
child's safety and that you acted with mal-intent towards your

You can also sign the petition at:

                                        John Murtari
Coordinator                            AKidsRight.Org
jmurtari@AKidsRight.Org          Kid's Right to BOTH parents
(315) 944-0999(x-211)            http://www.AKidsRight.Org/

A Kid's Right to Both Parents!
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