Tuesday, February 20, 2007

A small defeat for Lesbianism: Mother gets the right to be a mother

Post lifted from Stop the ACLU

Howard Bashman reports:

“The Utah Supreme Court today affirmed the parental rights of Cheryl Barlow, the mother of a 5-year-old child, granting Barlow’s request to reverse a lower court decision that had granted parental standing to her former partner, a lesbian political activist.” So begins a press release that Alliance Defense Fund issued today.

Today’s ruling of the Supreme Court of Utah in Jones v. Barlow can be accessed here.

It’s ridiculous that we’re even discussing (at state supreme court level no less!) whether a parent has the right to direct the upbringing of her own child without interference and disruption from a legal stranger. What we have in this case is a mother doing what she thinks is in the best interest of her own little girl. On the other side, we have a hardcore political activist creating chaos into the lives of that little girl and her mother, not in the best interest of the child, but seemingly in order to advance a radical political agenda. Of course, openly using children as political props is not uncommon among some.

The court savaged the idea that the homosexual extremists and lower court were attempting to advance that non-parents have veto power over true parents.

This temporary status is reinforced by the fact that the surrogate parent may arbitrarily cast the relationship aside at any time and thus terminate all parent-like obligations and rights. 67A C.J.S. Parent and Child 348 (2002); Taylor v. Taylor, 364 P.2d 444, 445 (Wash. 1961). It would be a perverse doctrine of law that left a legal parent unable to enforce support obligations against a surrogate parent's will because of the temporary status of the in loco parentis relationship but allowed a surrogate parent to extend her parent-like rights against the legal parent's objections for as long as she saw fit. Under such a distorted legal regime, the parent like rights and responsibilities are permanent and abiding for as long as the surrogate parent wants them to be, yet transitory and fleeting when the legal parent seeks to enforce a parental obligation against the surrogate parent. Such an inequitable result, which would prioritize the rights of the surrogate parent over the needs of the child, demonstrates that the in loco parentis doctrine does not contemplate a perpetual grant of rights and is, in fact, ill-suited to convey such rights.

One of the arguments put forth in cases like this is that the non-parent “dressed the child, wiped his nose and took him to the zoo,” etc. This is for emotional impact only and has no legal meaning. By that argument, any day care worker, especially these days when many women are leaving their 12-week old babies in day care from 8-5 every day, to make parental claims.

The court did the right thing by restoring calm in the life of a little girl and common sense about the role and the rights of parents.

Braving the wrath of latte man

Australian writer, Rebecca Weisser says a British Leftist author has faced some unpalatable facts about the Left:

Author and journalist Nick Cohen should be a darling of the Left. He regularly contributes to the New Statesman and The Observer in Britain and made a name for himself as a longstanding critic from the Left attacking Tony Blair's triumph of style over substance. But something happened to Cohen between the 2001 invasion of Afghanistan, which he vehemently opposed, and the anti-war rallies of 2003. Cohen's leftist coterie had airbrushed from their memories everything they knew about the brutality of Saddam Hussein's regime and the principles of solidarity with the oppressed.

Cohen thought that once Saddam had been toppled, the liberal-Left would back Iraqis building a democracy and denounce the slaughter of innocent Iraqi civilians by "insurgents" hell-bent on building either a Baathist state or a "godly global empire to repress the rights of democrats, the independent-minded, women and homosexuals". But around the world among the liberal-Left the consensus was that there was only one target with blood on his hands - the "world's No.1 war criminal, George W. Bush". "Eventually," Cohen writes, "I grew tired of waiting for a change that was never going to come and resolved to find out what had happened to a Left whose benevolence I had taken for granted."

The result is an incisive book, published last month in Britain and this month in Australia, What's Left? How Liberals Lost Their Way, which denounces as moral bankruptcy the tendency of some in the liberal-Left to end up as apologists for fascist governments and movements. Cohen's ambition is to show how the Left of the 20th century ended up supporting the far Right of the 21st century.

Inspired by US writer Paul Berman's Terror and Liberalism, Cohen ranges over the history of the Left during the past century, examining the relationship between the Left and fascism. Cohen finds the roots of this behaviour in the Nazi-Soviet pact, when Marxists openly supported fascism and declared democracy the enemy. He surveys the defence by some in the Left of Slobodan Milosevic and his ethnic cleansing in Bosnia and Kosovo, Noam Chomsky's defence of Pol Pot, Michel Foucault's support for the Islamic Revolution in Iran, tacit support for the perpetrators of 9/11, the Madrid bombing, London's 7/7 and the attribution of ultimate responsibility to the US.

The Australian Left has not been immune to this topsy-turvy logic, which pursues Betrand Russell's fallacy of the superior virtue of the oppressed to ridiculous conclusions. Clive Hamilton, executive director of the Australia Institute, was one of the few on the Left even to admit that it was in the interests of the world that democracy should succeed in Iraq but his caveat was that the US should be humiliated in the process. "The bloody nose that the US has received in Iraq has severely dented the confidence of the neo-cons and that can only be good for the world," he wrote for Foreign Policy in Focus, a US left-wing think-tank, in July 2005.

The Australian Left's impassioned campaigns on behalf of David Hicks and "Jihad Jack" Thomas are part of the impulse to apologise for those who by their own admission support the violent imposition of Islamic fundamentalism but decry loud and long the slow and imperfect functioning of the US judicial and legislative processes in the unfamiliar area of the international laws of war.

Cohen, like Christopher Hitchens, Melanie Phillips and David Aaronovitch, stands in the proud English tradition of writers such as George Orwell who came from the Left and dared risk its wrath criticising it. He is a signatory of the Euston Manifesto, a document created last year by those on the Left disillusioned by its drift to support the far Right. It set out the principles which the Left should stand for - democracy, freedom, equality and internationalism, and those which it should condemn - tyranny, terrorism, anti-Americanism, racism, anti-Semitism and anti-Zionism.

Cohen worried it was so bland that it would sink without a trace. In fact, it launched a tidal wave of support and dissent. "It was a symptom of liberal life that a statement of the obvious produced by obscure men and women in a London pub could cause such a fuss." In denouncing the failings of the Left, Cohen made an unwanted discovery - its anti-Semitism.

A headline on The Guardian website, "David Aaronovitch and Nick Cohen are enough to make a good man anti-Semitic", was challenged by an enraged reader who protested against the inherent bigotry and demanded the headline be rewritten as, "David Aaronovitch and Nick Cohen are enough to make a good man, or woman, anti-Semitic."

Source. There is an excerpt from Nick Cohen's book here

Museum DNA test proposal

Fake Australian Aborigines (some with blond hair) who roll in affirmative action privileges fear exposure

The Natural History Museum in London wants to use the remains of Tasmanian Aborigines to develop a simple DNA test for Aboriginal ancestry. A report obtained by The Weekend Australian says research into the DNA of the remains it holds could provide a key to creating such a test. "DNA analysis of the remains and subsequent comparisons with (the) Tasmanian community may allow the establishment of Aboriginal descent in the absence of documentation," it says, provoking condemnation from Aboriginal groups. The report cites the development of such DNA testing as a key "benefit" of allowing the NHM to hold on to the remains.

Australian researchers said such DNA testing could be done, but suggested it would only demonstrate Aboriginal descent "on the balance of probabilities". They also expressed concern some right-wing commentators might demand DNA vetting of those claiming government-funded Aboriginal cultural and welfare programs. The number of Australians identifying themselves as Aboriginal in the census has risen sharply from 265,459 in 1991 to 410,000 in 2001.

Indigenous Affairs Minister Mal Brough said he was not interested in the DNA test. "There is only one issue that concerns us and that is respecting the remains of indigenous people and rightful custodians of those remains," Mr Brough said. "The distress caused to indigenous people in Tasmania far outweighs any potential scientific gains."


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