October 24, 2016 by Robert Franklin, Esq, Member, National Board of Directors, National Parents Organization
Doubling down on their non-solution to the state’s catastrophic situation with Child Protective Services, Texas’ top elected officials are now calling on “faith-based communities” to help solve its foster care crisis (Texas Tribune, 10/17/16).
I last reported here on a letter sent by the Governor, Lieutenant Governor and Speaker of the House to the Commissioner of the Department of Family and Protective Services. As I said then, the letter was full of powerful language and stern directives to CPS to do a better job of protecting children. But entirely lacking was any mention of increased resources for doing the vital job of protecting children from harm. Given that, in the past, Governor Greg Abbott has refused to promise an increased budget for the DFPS, the letter’s exhortations rang hollow to say the least. Words are just words, but improvement in an agency that no one claims to be performing up to even the most minimal standards will take more money. It’ll take more than money, to be sure, but a larger budget is the sine qua non of reform.
October 23, 2016 by Robert Franklin, Esq, Member, National Board of Directors, National Parents Organization
As if being a father isn’t hard enough, now there’s this.
We are at a point in our history at which dads are caught betwixt and between. Traditional sex roles demand that they be providers for their wives and kids. New sex roles demand that they be caregivers for their kids. But fathers who do the former are reviled as being indifferent to their children because they failed to do enough hands-on childcare. The idea that earning the money to feed, house, clothe and educate their children doesn’t constitute parenting is one of the many false and downright loony notions of our time. But in family court, it’s expressed every day in judges’ parenting time orders.
October 21, 2016 by Robert Franklin, Esq, Member, National Board of Directors, National Parents Organization
I’ve often inveighed against the propensity of child welfare agencies to either under-respond to real cases of child abuse or neglect, or over-respond to cases in which children are at no risk whatsoever. In those latter cases, Lenore Skenazy’s website Free-Range Kids is always a source of valuable information. State intervention into parental decision-making, regardless of whether children need it or not is rife. And it always seems to come with the ultimate threat – obey, or we’ll take away your kids.
October 20, 2016 by Robert Franklin, Esq, Member, National Board of Directors, National Parents Organization
The Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts has upheld the right of a non-biological parent in a same-sex relationship to assert parental rights to the couple’s children.
Two women, Karen Partanen and Julie Gallagher weren’t married, but had an intimate relationship from 2001 - 2013. In 2005, they decided to have children and Partanen unsuccessfully underwent in vitro fertilization. In 2007, Gallagher successfully underwent in vitro fertilization and gave birth to a daughter, Jo. In 2011, the couple did the same thing and had a son whom they named Ja.
October 19, 2016 by Robert Franklin, Esq, Member, National Board of Directors, National Parents Organization
"You could see the little girls, fat with complacency and conceit while the little boys sat there crumpled, apologising for their existence, thinking this was going to be the pattern of their lives."
Lessing said the teacher tried to "catch my eye, thinking I would approve of this rubbish".