Its laws in one area seem to be outside those of human decency, and certainly unconstitutional. And it has to do with the Mormon Church, which really controls the electorate, which controls the legislature, the courts, the everything. This is Utah today. Separation of church and state is pro forma, but does not really exist. It is a state like no other where separation of church and state exists on paper only, because the Church of the Latter-Day Saints of Jesus Christ really runs just about everything, and should not be tax exempt.
In yet another case, a single father from another state (Florida) is fighting to gain custody of his nearly year-old daughter whose former girl friend left her newborn with strangers in that unholy state, reports the Salt Lake Tribune, in the first of a four-part series by Brooke Adams. Of course, in Utah, that was perfectly legal, even though the father of the child was doing everything possible to protect his paternal rights. In Utah, that matters not.
IN UTAH, IT'S GRAB (the child) and GO (to the adopters)
According to the Tribune story, the daughter of Ramsey Shaud, 22, and Shasta Tew has been with her adoptive caretakers since she was a few days old. Even even though Shuad did everything by the book, the state is still conspiring to steal this child from her father. Shaud's case was heard by the Utah Supreme Court in September and it is likely to be several more months before a decision comes down. Then the argument is likely to be that it is in the "best interests" of the child to not remove her from "the only family she has ever known."
If the past is any guide, it is unlikely that Shaud will ever gain custody of his daughter. Because this is Utah.
When 22 -year-old Shaud learned that a girl friend was pregnant, he let Shasta Tew, 19, know that he wanted to raise the child with the help of his family. But since she balked at the idea, and said she wanted to have the child adopted by strangers, he soon filed with the Father's Registry in Florida, their home state, and sent in the $20 filing fee. Five months letter, he got a terse note from Tew's mother that she was taking a three-day holiday trip to Arizona and Utah.
He immediately went on line and found the form for the father's registry in Arizona, printed it out, filled it in and sent it in. But Utah was more troubling. Despite spending hours on line trying to find the form, it was nowhere to be found. The clear intent is to make it nearly impossible for fathers to comply with the convoluted law within the time frame, as lawyers who helped draft the legislation have stated. After Shaud failed to turn up helpful information on the Utah website, Shaud searched the Internet for "how to prevent adoption in Utah" and discovered a website created by Cody O’Dea of Wyoming, detailing his own and numerous other fathers’ unsuccessful fights to stop or undo adoptions in Utah. Shaud then hired an attorney, hoping to undue the adoption of his daughter who was born on January 15, 2010.
Mothers from any state may sign their children away irrevocably 24 hours after birth. A single father who hopes to raise his child--before the mother signs the surrender paper in Utah--must:
- File a paternity action in a Utah court stating he is “willing and able” to have full custody and will pay child support, pregnancy-related and childbirth expenses. It also must detail a plan for the child’s care, including specifically how he will Nomake his money to pay for the child's expenses, and who will care for the the child while he is at work. One father was denied his petition to gain custody of his own child because he left this detail off the filing.
- File a “notice of commencement of paternity proceeding” with the Office of Vital Statistics.
- Prove he paid for a reasonable share of the mother’s pregnancy-related and childbirth expenses, unless he is able to show he did not know about the pregnancy or was not allowed to pay expenses.
|Wyatt and Baby Emma--ABC News|
Wyatt also has filed a federal lawsuit against Act of Love, the adoption agency; Larry Jenkins, the agency’s attorney; and the adoptive parents, alleging a vast conspiracy exists in Utah to take children from unwed biological fathers.
JUSTICE FOR FATHERS IN UTAH IS A JOKE. very funny.
Justice for unmarried fathers in Utah today is reminiscent of segregation laws in the South before the Civil Rights Act of the Sixties. In Utah, single fathers from any state can and do lose the right to raise their own children because the Draconian attitude of the Mormon church, all legally implemented by the state laws, makes it nearly impossible for them to gain custody. What shouldn't even be an issue once paternity is proven is Utah's very dirty little secret. Fathers are routinely stripped of their rights as fathers and the children given to good Mormon couples to raise without any concern for the father, or the child. Fathers typically lose because they don’t meet Utah's absurd deadlines, as happened in Shaud’s case. A lower court judge ruled his consent to his daughter’s adoption was not required because he didn’t meet a filing deadline — a delay Shaud argues was caused by Utah’s four-day workweek and a federal holiday.
In 1986, the Utah Supreme Court did find for a father, Rudy Aguilar of California, and ordered the child returned. Judge Daniel Stewart, in a sharply worded dissent, wrote that if "fairness were a guideline, it would destroy the system and hold children and adoptive parents hostage of their fathers." That pretty much sums of the LDS opinion toward fairness. Raising a child in a two-parent Mormon household trumps fairness anytime. In March 1986, the Utah Supreme Court reversed their decision (after obviously being told by LDS elders what the"right" decision was, finding the mother had deliberately withheld information from Aguilar, violating his due process rights.
But Aguilar was financially unable to continue the legal fight when it was sent back to a lower court. He gave up and has since died. That child is now 25; it would be interesting to know how how he felt when he found out how the state and the LDS agency, acting in obvious consort, thwarted his being raised by his own people. Me, I'd be hopping mad.
KEEPING THE CHILD FROM THE LOVE OF A FATHER
In 2008, Nikolas Thurnwald lost his case because he didn’t get an amended court document notarized or explain who would tend the child while he was at work. That same year, a father identified in court documents only as "C.C.D" declared he would assume full financial responsibility for the child but lost because he did not get a court order of child support or detail what would happen to the child if he were deported.
These are only a sampling of the injustice done to fathers because the Church of Jesus-Christ of the Latter-Day Saints, is so rapidly against any child being raised in a single-parent home, unless death has intervened. This is not in keeping with the laws of the rest of the country. In terms of fathers rights, the Mormon and the state of Utah are so far afield they defy laws the rest of the country--and the world--abide by.
Yet talk to David McConkie, the manager of children’s services at LDS Family Services, and he will tell you that Utah’s law is aimed at balancing the interests of all parties — the state, the mother, the biological father, the infant, the adoptive parents. LDS arranges adoptions through its 62 offices in the U.S. and abroad and is owned by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. "There’s going to be cases where it doesn’t work very well, but you can’t craft a law around a specific case," said McConkie [in an interview with the Tribune]. "You’ve got to craft a law that meets society’s interests and the parties’ interests more generally."
As long as the child ends up in an LDS household. Last summer when we wrote about LDS and adoption, we received an anonymous comment that stated:
You know what's funny about that? Even assuming that all these women remained single when their babies were born, those numbers which the LDS office was trumpeting is approximately four times the national average of women in the U.S. who relinquish their children to adoption, which is fewer than one percent."In 2009 the LDS Family Services office in Dallas, TX were informed of approx. 280 pregnant unwed mothers in the neighboring Mormon congregations. Only 11 placed their babies for adoption."
Most of you must know that one of the presidential candidates with rich friends is Mormon Mitt Romney, who did his two-year missionary work in France during the Vietnam war and once drove to Canada with the family dog strapped to the top of the car.--lorraine
Sources: Stopping an adoption: In Utah, unwed fathers rarely win
Utah adoption law: model for nation or unjust burden?
Utah rules against natural father. Again. And again.
Adoption Reform and the LDS ...
Utah to Birth Fathers: Go Back to the Grave!