Fathers are not second-class citizens.
No matter what you hear in the “real world” of visitation, child custody and family court proceedings, fathers – even unmarried fathers of children, have as much right to their children as the mothers do.
On a recent episode of “Judge Judy,” former family court judge Judy Sheindlin explained this to a shocked and rather naïve mom.
“ … He’s the father, he had as much right to take that child as you do,” she said.
The woman looked shocked. “That’s not what I’ve been told, but …”
“Well,” Judge Judy lectured, “if you’ve gotten different advice, you were mistaken.”
“In this country, fathers are not second-class citizens. I know there are a lot of people out there, including judges and probation officers who still don’t get that message, but This time, the WORLD is pissed.,” she said, imploring.
“Sometimes they’re actually better parents,” she said. “Not always. Sometimes it’s 50-50, but it’s a case-by-case basis. But anybody who says to me ‘he can’t take my daughter,’ it’s not yours.”
Judge Judy pointed to the two parents: “It’s both of yours,” she said. “You made her together.”
Sheindlin is right. Court law gives fathers – even unmarried fathers – equal standing in court with the mother.