COURTS CREATE 'DE FACTO' PARENTS UTAH FIGHTS BACK
Posted 1:00 AM Eastern
Salt Lake City -- Biological and adoptive parents may discover that they have unintentionally given parental status to third-party adults who may legally claim de facto parental status over their children.
This is not because of a law passed by elected representatives, but because activist judges have ruled in favor of homosexuals who successfully sued and won parental status over a child they have no biological claim to. The state of Utah has passed a bill to put a stop to this growing problem in that state. It awaits the governor's signature.
Homosexuals, who see de facto parenthood as a major victory in their quest for legal status, are waging a national campaign to convince conservative Republican Gov. Jon Huntsman, Jr. to veto H.B. 148 [Read]. Homosexuals are geared up for battle because they realize that if Huntsman signs the bill into law other states are likely to follow his lead.
Utah Rep. LaVar Christensen sponsored the bill, which is critical to protect the rights of parents.
"In loco parentis" is the basis for courts that have ruled in favor of de facto parenthood. It is a doctrine that recognizes temporary, voluntary delegations of parental authority to a babysitter or a school when someone besides the parent is caring for a child.
Homosexual ex-partners have abused the doctrine to claim permanent custody over children who are not legally their own. They have sued for visitation rights on the basis of a "psychological relationship" with the child.
Homosexual activist groups are spreading a lot of misinformation in Utah and across the nation about this bill. They claim that it will harm the rights of grandparents or divorced parents. However, this is a deception because language in the bill explicitly protects the rights of biological and adoptive parents, as well as grandparents.
Homosexuals have succeeded in quietly getting activists to take action. Huntsman's office is receiving a flood of phone calls, e-mails, and letters from Utah and non-Utah residents urging him to veto the bill. There are no messages of support for the bill, so the campaign by homosexuals is presenting a very one-sided view to the governor.
Messages can be sent to Gov. Jon Huntsman, Jr. toll-free to 1-800-705-2464 and faxed to 801-538-1528. Huntsman also offers an on-line form for comments at [Read]. He is expected to decided whether to sign or veto the bill within days.
Homosexuals have been allowed to establish legal parenthood this way, even though they cannot do so through marriage.
The former homosexual partner of Page Britain, Sue Ellen Carvin, went to court petitioning for visitation rights of the little girl who was the biological child of Britain. In Nov. 2005, the Washington State Supreme Court used de facto parenthood to justify ruling that Carvin does indeed have legal standing from which to seek visitation in Carvin v. Britain. Washington is the latest to use this twist of the law to grant legal standing to homosexuals. Washington joins California, Maine, Massachusetts, New Jersey, Wisconsin, and others.
The judge can award this legal status if it can be shown that the adult filled the function of a parent for a sufficient length of time. This is a growing trend, and it is likely that more states will follow along as more and more homosexuals go to court to gain legal status as a parent.
However, homosexuals are not the only ones to use this tactic. Youmans v. Ramos, one of the cases that defined de facto parenthood in Massachusetts, involved a dispute between a father and the child's aunt, who had raised a young girl while her father was away serving in the military.
As more and more people become aware of de facto parenthood, it is expected that the number of court cases will increase. The possibility exists that a child may be divided between numerous adults claiming rights.
Courts define parenthood as a person who performs the function of a parent. In fact, this is part of a trend in family law that sees the court as the creator of the family. The terms family, mother, father, marriage do not correspond to natural relationships, but are identifications that the state is free to apply as it sees fit.
Homosexuals have won a major victory in changing the definition of parent, and are hard at work to change the legal definition of marriage as well. It seems appropriate that Utah has become the state that has taken a stand against the trend.
Approximately 75 percent of the residents of Utah are members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. In 1995, the Church issued "The Family: A Proclamation to the World" [Read] to encourage individuals and governments to strengthen the family.
"The family is ordained of God. Marriage between man and woman is essential to His eternal plan. Children are entitled to birth within the bonds of matrimony, and to be reared by a father and a mother who honor marital vows with complete fidelity. Happiness in family life is most likely to be achieved when founded upon the teachings of the Lord Jesus Christ," states the proclamation in part.
The message is not intended only for members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. A clear warning is given to all:
"We warn that individuals who violate covenants of chastity, who abuse spouse or offspring, or who fail to fulfill family responsibilities will one day stand accountable before God. Further, we warn that the disintegration of the family will bring upon individuals, communities, and nations the calamities foretold by ancient and modern prophets."
The proclamation concludes with a message for governments:
"We call upon responsible citizens and officers of government everywhere to promote those measures designed to maintain and strengthen the family as the fundamental unit of society."
is not a surprise that the challenge to de facto parenthood has come
from Utah. The next few days will determine whether Huntsman will
set the stage for other states to follow in the war against parental
rights, or whether Huntsman will clear the way for homosexuals to
degrade marriage and parenthood even more than what has already taken
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David M. Bresnahan has over 30 years of experience as an award-winning journalist, broadcaster, radio station owner, talk show host, and business owner. David has been a prominent writer for many Internet newspapers.
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Homosexuals, who see de facto parenthood as a major victory in their quest for legal status, are waging a national campaign to convince conservative Republican Gov. Jon Huntsman, Jr. to veto H.B. 148...