Forty years ago can seem like light years in cultural terms.
Forty years ago, the story of a Vermont lesbian who wanted to take a child away from her biological mother--because the mother was a Christian--would have been unbelievable.
Janet Jenkins, part of a now-sundered lesbian twosome, has alleged that because of Lisa Miller’s (the biological mother) Christian parenting practices, Miller is no longer is a fit mother. Jenkins is seeking full custody of the child.
Miller and Jenkins were a couple before Miller left the relationship and became a Christian. Now, the Virginia Supreme Court has to rule if 6-year-old Isabella, Miller's child, is to be ripped away from her and custody given to Jenkins.
Mathew Staver, chief of Liberty Counsel, said the impact of the decision will reach far beyond the important determination of the future for the child in question, also impacting states' sovereignty and the values on which Christian parents make decisions.
Staver said that the wrong ruling could set Isabella up to be "paraded as a political trophy of the homosexual community in Vermont".
"This case is exceptionally important because the future of [the child] Isabella hangs in the balance," he said. "Her future will be to either remain with her biological mother, Lisa Miller, or potentially be ripped away from her mom and placed in a lesbian household… This case is also important because states must also have the sovereign authority to maintain their marriage policy as the union of one man and one woman, while rejecting same-sex unions. Virginia's Constitution compels the state supreme court to not recognize out-of-state, same-sex marriages and civil unions.
"But if Virginia loses its sovereignty, then the sovereignty of every other state is put in jeopardy," he said.
Vermont's Supreme Court already granted parental rights and visitation to Jenkins. Miller and Isabella live in Virginia and Miller has gone to the Virginia Supreme to defend her right to raise her own daughter as she sees fit.
"This hearing will determine whether a lesbian woman who is Lisa Miller's former partner will share custody of Isabella, Lisa's daughter," wrote Matt Barber, policy director for cultural issues at Concerned Women for America. "The woman is neither an adoptive parent nor is she biologically related to Isabella. In fact, she's a total stranger to the little girl.
"Isabella, who is now 6 years old, hadn't seen this woman since she was 17 months old. This case could have national ramifications and will help decide whether states like Vermont and Massachusetts get to export their radical new definitions of marriage and family around the country," Barber said.
The relationship ended when Miller became a Christian and claimed Jenkins was abusive. Miller, who says she no longer is a lesbian, lives with her daughter in Virginia.
Lower courts in Virginia have ruled Miller is the sole parent and the Virginia Marriage Affirmation Act bars recognition of civil unions. The Vermont Supreme Court, however, reached across state lines to demand that Miller allow Jenkins visitation.
Jenkins alleges that Miller's Christianity is unhealthy and harmful to Isabella
"That's true. Janet Jenkins, in court documents in Vermont, argued because Lisa prays for her daughter and her well-being, and even prays for Janet, that in fact that is not in the best interests of Isabella. She [Jenkins] says because Lisa prays for her daughter, and tells her she's praying to do God's will, Janet has taken the position that … Christianity is harmful to children," Staver told WorldNetDaily.
As pat sums the whole case up: "The woman attempting to gain custody is not the mother in any sense, nor does she pay child support. The 'bad' parenting alleged is the practice of Christianity. The Vermont Court asserts authority over both parties because a 'civil union' was contracted there. The birth and residency of the child was never in Vermont. This case appears to be setup to void traditional 'best interest of the child' standards in favor of 'whatever a gay person wants'"
Forty years ago, the idea that a lesbian could seek to declare a mother unfit because of her desire to raise her daughter as a Christian would have been laughable.
It would be laughable still, if it weren't for the unrelenting legal push for increased rights and privileges for "lifestyle" choices.
Once a particular "lifestyle" is given favored status, what logic would prevent other "lifestyles" from gaining legal standing.
Pedophilia already has its champion in NAMBLA. It's only a matter of time until the North American Man Boy Love Association files suit, alleging discrimination against its "lifestyle".
Or long-suffering farm animal lovers file suit, seeking to extend legal protections to bestiality.
That this discussion is even taking place is viewed by some as a sign of our country's "progressiveness". Others view it as a sign of our culture's degeneration.
Forty years, the Vermont Supreme Court would have explained to Janet Jenkins that there is a reason for civilization's disdain for her "lifestyle"--and most of the reasons had to do with the well-being of children and society at large.
Forty years ago, America would not have been in danger of having a few states with radical courts forcing their decisions on the rest of the country.
Forty years ago sometimes seems forever ago in cultural terms.
hat tip: pat
* Lesbian Demands Custody of Christian Mom's 6-year-old
* Lesbian Ex: Mother's Christianity Makes Her Unfit Parent
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