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American Coalition for
Fathers and Children
Shared Parenting - Children Need Both Parents
Remembering Memorial Day
On Memorial Day it’s fitting to reflect on the sacrifices our friends, neighbors and fellow citizens have made as members of the Armed Services. We repeatedly hear stories from members of the military expressing surprise and bewilderment that the country they swear to defend becomes the government that takes their children when they return home and face the family courts.
Last November we brought you the story of Ron Zaleski, a Veteran who was walking across America to raise awareness of Veteran suicides. Over 5,000 vets each year take their own lives. Research indicates 70% of these experiences are tied in some way to divorce or relationship failure. In April, Ron completed his walk across the country. Take a moment today, or tomorrow, and give Ron a call or drop him an email and thank him for what he’s done. Ron’s story and contact info are available here.
One of the most poignant videos about the plight of soldiers returning home and facing the courts is this one filmed by our affiliate, Second Class Citizen. It’s called a “Purple Heart’s Final Beat” and was made as a tribute to a soldier who served his country only to find the family courts could care less.
This past Friday, I went to court to see what one of our local judges would do regarding the case of a man who had been incarcerated for the past ten weeks because he was too poor to pay child support. I talked with his 73 year old mother before the hearing and listened to her anguish over her 50 year old son whose ‘crime’ was having lost his job. As the hearing progressed opposing counsel talked about how he’d been to the county land records office and ‘mom’ had plenty of equity in her home and could readily pay the ‘obligation.’ I listened as this attorney continued to argue for ongoing incarceration, a year or two more anyway. Then the judge just did the right thing and said: “It’s obvious he can’t pay, incarceration serves no purpose, he will be released today.”
So why did it take 10 weeks to figure the obvious? Was it because mom had forked over $10,000 in ransom several months before to keep her beloved son out of jail? Perhaps, but it appeared to several spectators that opposing counsel was simply going to milk the situation for fees as long as possible. One goes home, tens of thousands still in debtor prisons around the nation.
Millions of families have been needlessly destroyed in our nation’s courts. Lawfare is being waged against our own, by our own. It is our obligation as citizens to end this travesty.
The Price of Freedom
After court ended, I drove over to Arlington Cemetery to reflect a bit on the family court drama just played out. The photo’s at these links speak for themselves. The three silver spires in the background of the one picture are the air force memorial at the Pentagon. The other provides just a glimpse of the thousands buried in Arlington. Each Memorial Day a flag is placed before each marker.
Many bikers were already in town for the annual ride from the Pentagon to the Vietnam Memorial. A number of them wore shirts or patches saying; "All gave some, Some gave all." ACFC thanks all who have served.