I apologize for not replying to questions in the post for so long. Between my health
and the stress involved with this issue this has been a difficult thread for me to follow. I'll also in advance for any typos and or other mistakes
I make in this response. The meds they currently have me loaded up on makes it difficult to focus. I'm not even going to respond to the comparison between children
and cats other than to say my daughter left her dog with me when she left and I still have her.
In an update.. My mother passed back on May 25th, and on June 4th I went in the hospital for a minor elective surgery and ended up having three surgeries and was in a coma for two weeks. Total time in hospital 4 weeks. I've been home for a month now and still have an RN stop by the house everyday to check on me. In moving on, the result is that my daughter and I are talking again for several hours a day, every day and our relationship is restoring itself very well right now. However, she turned 18 this past May and at this point will not be coming back home. I also received a letter from the WV State Supreme Court denying my appeal. I will continue this fight on to the US Courts because I wish to put an end to this Unconstitutional practice and possibly pursue damages. But let me add that there is NO AMOUNT of money
that can make up for the year and a half of my daughter's life where she got her drivers license
and went to her first prom.
For the record
I am not an attorney. I am a political scientist that has been involved in the fathers' rights movement for 28 yrs now. I am also the lobbyist that wrote all of WV's divorce, child custody, and child support laws as passed back in 1999.
This was not done in an abuse and neglect hearing. The petitioners simply appeared before a Family
Law Judge, (whom doesn't even have the authority to hold an abuse and neglect hearing), and stated they should have custody because I think irrationally their evidence on this was that I want to live on a boat with my child and tour the world.
The plan was to purchase
a 41' sailboat, and spend a year or so getting to ready to tour and we weren't even planning to leave until after she graduated and then spend 2 yrs on the water
together before she was off to college. This would have been after she turned 18 and it was something me and her planned together since she was 12 yrs old. She never once indicated she didn't want to do this and she even made plans with two of her girl friends to go with us so she wouldn't get bored. We spent an hour or two every weekend reviewing boats on yachtworld.com and she picked the layout she wanted saying that if she was going to cook then she was going to pick the galley
Without opening my files and counting I can tell you that there are about 10 US Supreme Court decisions that make raising your children
without government interference
a Constitutionally Guaranteed Right under 4 separate Amendments as long as the Natural Parent or Parents are not found guilty of abuse or neglect. I can provide a list of all these decisions if anyone is interested.
In addressing the "Best Interest Of the Child" The US Supreme Court has touched on this issue as well in a decision stating that the Constitutional Rights of the Child CAN NOT violate the Rights of the Natural Parents. You might also note that "Best Interest of the Child Laws" were being pushed through by Grand-Parents Rights Groups in the attempt to give them an avenue to fight for custody and or visitation of their Grand-Children. A US Supreme Court just destroyed a Washington
law where visitation with a child was given to the Grand-Parents stating the Grand-Parents had no right to violate the Parents' Constitutional Right to make decisions concerning their child. The particular law I am fighting is a section under Chapter 44 of the WV State Code, (Chapter 44 is titled "Estate and Trust Fund)," which gives a child age 14 or over the right to nominate their own guardian. 20 yrs ago our State Supreme Court decided this section allows for a Child age 14 and over to decide which parent they want to live with in the event of a divorce. I do not have a problem with this as long as there is a method to attribute the amount of weight given to a child's testimony based on maturity and the reasoning behind the child's decision.
For those of you living in VA you should know that this particular section was passed in the State of VA in 1823 and was carried over into WV State Code when WV separated from VA during the Civil War.
The way in which WV is currently applying this section effectively gives a child the right to divorce a natural parent and pick who ever they want to raise them.