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Court reverses summary contempt for disgruntled dad (access required)

A disgruntled litigant who waged a seven-year public battle with the judge who ruled on his custody dispute has won reversal of his summary contempt conviction in an unpublished decision by the Virginia Court of Appeals. Fauquier County Circuit Judge Jeffrey W. Parker held Greg Harrington in contempt of court in November 2008 based on a ...

3 comments

  1. When this guy isn’t picketing and spitting, he is flying airplanes? With people in them?

  2. Commendable — A good father and good citizen. Given such conscientiousness and tenacity, he must be an excellent pilot.

  3. What about millions of Fathers who are MIA because of the family court system? Political figures often discuss the welfare of our children but never discuss the problems regarding our family court system, unfair visitation laws and how those laws affect fathers who want to be part of their children’s lives.

    There is a Child Support Enforcement agency in every state but not a Visitation/Parenting Time Enforcement Agency. Why?? This needs to be an issue addressed at the federal level and not decided by the states because the system at the state level is not working. Most states call the time Fathers spend with their children as “Visitation” instead of calling it what it is “Parenting time”. Parenting time is a time to be a parent to your child. Visitation is what the family court force on fathers, as they want fathers to become an occasional visitor. Family courts wants fathers to settle for becoming a ‘Disney Dad,’ one whose role is nothing more than outings to theme parks once or twice a month. Why can’t the family courts grant time to fathers in a frequency, duration, and type reasonably calculated to promote a strong and loving relationship between the child and the parent? The standard visitation which is four days a month is not enough time to be an effective parent to your child. The family courts very, very rarely enforce visitation. Here, the prejudice is against fathers and their parental rights. The congress refuses to acknowledge the injustice, cruelty, brutality and inhumanity of denying the love and companionship between a father and their child. Divorce from a spouse is not a divorce from your children, nor should custody decisions be used as a punishment. Joint custody can benefit the children, the divorced parents, and society in general by having both parents involved in the child’s upbringing.

    Fathers are systematically eliminated from their children’s lives. Father’s parental rights are systematically terminated by family court judges who have a deep seated gender bias against fathers. Termination of parental rights is both total and irrevocable. Termination of parental rights is the family law equivalent of the death penalty in a criminal case. The primary casualties in our Domestic Relations courts are our children.

    Courts are supposed to approach cases of child custody, support payments, and visitation rights in a gender-neutral posture. It sounds fair, and it is fair. But it is a myth. Judges are not enforcing these gender laws fairly, and few seem to care. Unless you have been forcefully removed from the everyday upbringing of your child by the Court, you can not fathom the emotional distress. To discriminate against fathers because of their gender in this day and age is no different than telling a person to go to the back of the bus because of their skin color. With sole or primary custody going to the mother in roughly 90% of cases, claiming custody is not based on gender would be like claiming hiring is not based on race if 90% of a particular race, though equally qualified, was unable to obtain employment. This was missing from the Obama’s Father’s day speech. What about millions of Fathers who are MIA because of the family court system?

    Anguish is experienced by hundreds of thousands of fathers across the country. Their grievances include: blocked visitation and unenforced visitation orders; “move away” spouses who use geography as a method of driving fathers out of their children’s lives; acceptance by the courts of false and/or uncorroborated accusations as a basis for denying custody or even contact between parent and child; a “win/lose” system which pits ex-spouses against one another by designating a custodial and a noncustodial parent; courts which in determining custody tilt heavily towards the parent who initiates the divorce, thus encouraging each parent to “strike first”; burdensome legal costs; and judicial preference for mothers over fathers as custodial parents.

    The child’s right to equal access and opportunity with both parents, the right to be guided and nurtured by both parents, the right to have major decisions made by the application of both parents’ wisdom, judgment and experience. The child does not forfeit these rights when the parents divorce.

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