Sunday, July 1, 2012

UPDATE: Minnesota Judge Has 200 Blunt Words for Divorcing Parents (02/28/15)

  •  UPDATE: February 28, 2015
Thought I would add a few comments on "Points to Ponder" on those Advocates that a spreading the word on our Social Media that: "Parent Alienation is Child Abuse"
To be Absolutely Clear. Of course I recognize that
"Alienation" exists.
But, do consider these thoughts:
  • First the Child Protective AGENCY has a big enough shopping list, sorta speak, of what is deemed "Child Abuse" (Getting it wrong too many times, by removing children with little evidence)
  • Second to merely say "Parent" Alienation" is a bit short sighted. Their may be others within the Family that may be responsible for "Alienation". So, I prefer the phrase "Family" Alienation.
  • Third, I am a strong believer that the Parents brought a Precious child into the world and they should be responsible, No matter what their location.
Believe me in my life journey, I've experienced ALL THE ABOVE. Noting, I am experiencing this with one of my Granddaughters.

  • HOWEVER, one is asking our Government, Courts, etc. to solve said concern...
  • BUT, the turn around and say there is too much Government, Courts, etc. Control.
(Key Phrase "parens patriae">>

Original Post: July 1, 2012
Although some may feel it is rare, some judges actually know what they are talking about. Received a copy of a news article from 2001. Thought I would take the time to type the words of this judge out.

Please note in our discussion group over the years with one common goal in mind “Defending Ourselves against False Allegations.” Although this article eludes to Parent Alienation, here is one thought we all may want to consider: “We do not OWN Our Children. We as adults are merely here to Guide them through Sharing, Caring, and Guidance, with the hopes, that they too will become Responsible Adults. Noting, of course, Responsibility is not necessarily a Democratic Process?”

  • So here is the article by the judge:
Minnesota Judge Has 200 Blunt Words
for Divorcing Parents
By Judge Michael Haas
“Your children have come into this world because of the two of you. Perhaps you two made lousy choices as to whom you decided to be the other parent. If so, that is your problem and your fault.

No matter what you think of the other party—or what your family thinks of the other party—these children are one-half of each of your. Remember that, because every time you tell your child what an “idiot” his father is, or what a “fool” his mother is, or how bad the absent parent is, or what terrible things that person has done, you are telling the child half of him is bad.

That is an unforgivable thing to do to a child. That is not love. That is possession. If you do that to your children, you will destroy them as surely as if you had cut them into pieces, because that is what you are doing to their emotions.

I sincerely hope that you do not do that to your children. Think more about your children and less about yourselves, and make yours a selfless kind of love, not foolish or selfish, or your children will suffer.”

Original Article
The following advice from retired Minnesota Judge has been circulating for years among judges, attorneys and child advocates as powerful words of advice for all parents going through a divorce.  We hope you'll take the time to read them!

Judge Michael Haas retired in December 2002 after 26 years of service as a Judge in Cass County, Minnesota.  In a letter written to advice columnist Abigail Van Buren as early as October 1994 by attorney Paul J. Kiltinen of Baxter, Minnesota, Mr. Kiltinen shared the following remarks by Judge Hass in a particularly difficult divorce case, describing the Judge's remarks as "some of the most profound words of wisdom I've ever heard from the bench in all my years as an attorney.  His philosophy could provide insight to all parents, especially those who are involved in difficult dissolutions."

Judge Haas' concise advice in less than 200 words is so well known and so widely respected that it has been referenced in multiple appellate court decisions, including Burke v. Burke, Tennessee Court of Appeals, No. M2000-01111-COA-R3-CV, Aug. 7, 2001 and Krupp v. Cunningham-Grogan, Tennessee Court of Appeals, No. M2005-01098-COA-R3-CV, August 29, 2006. 

It's also been cited in Lawyers Weekly USA No. 9921543 and in Don R. Ash's law review article, Bridge Over Troubled Water: Changing the Custody Law in Tennessee, 27 U. Mem. L. Rev. 769, 771-72 (1997).

This message was "resurrected" in 2000 when it was republished as a letter published by advice columnist Ann Landers (the twin sister of "Dear Abby").

More than 15 years after the fact, Judge Haas' moving words are sprinkled all over the Internet, found on court websites, blogs, attorney webpages, in court decisions and in law journals.

We don't know if Judge Haas was speaking extemporaneously on the record or if these 197 words above were purely "off the cuff".  Regardless, this message will always remain profound and powerful advice when parents are ready to engage in custody battles for their children.