"Honor thy father and thy mother."

We the People...

ON PARENTAL RIGHTS 

The Solution: The Parental Rights Amendment
 
"Through activist courts and the threat of ratifying the UN’s Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC), big government intrudes on families more and more. Already, the liberty of parents to direct the upbringing of their children has greatly eroded in federal courts and in such settings as public schools, local libraries, and your doctor’s office." -- Michael Farris, president, ParentalRights.org

The only solution to the attack on the child-parent relationship is the Parental Rights Amendment -- securing the rights of parents to raise their children. 

Only a constitutional amendment will ensure that the courts of our nation protect the fundamental right of parents to raise their children. And only a constitutional amendment will override international law that seeks to undermine the parental role. As the only complete solution to the danger confronting the child-parent relationship, the Parental Rights Amendment will place current Supreme Court doctrine protecting parental rights into the explicit text of the Constitution. Only the Parental Rights Amendment completely eliminates all threats to the child-parent relationship. It is the only comprehensive response to the attack on parental rights across our nation.

Below is the draft text for the Parental Rights Amendment.
View the annotated version here.


DRAFT PARENTAL RIGHTS AMENDMENT
FOR THE UNITED STATES CONSTITUTION

SECTION 1
The liberty of parents to direct the upbringing and education of their children is a fundamental right.

SECTION 2
Neither the United States nor any state shall infringe upon this right without demonstrating that its governmental interest as applied to the person is of the highest order and not otherwise served. This article shall not be construed to protect actions or decisions to end the life of any child, born or unborn.

SECTION 3
No treaty may be adopted nor shall any source of international law be employed to supersede, modify, interpret, or apply to the rights guaranteed by this article.


QUICK FACTS ON AMENDING THE CONSTITUTION

  • Only a constitutional amendment will ensure that parental rights will be honored in the United States, and protected from the threat of international law.
  • Only 33 amendments have ever been passed by Congress, and of these, only 27 have been ratified by the states.
  • Passing an amendment takes supporters at every level of government – in Congress, in committees, and in the states. Every American can play a vital role in this process by signing the petition and involving others in this campaign.

A constitutional amendment will ensure that judges who are currently denying parental rights will be obligated to recognize them. It will ensure that judges who are presently refusing to recognize parental rights because of their lack of explicit protection within the Constitution will instead safeguard parental rights.

The founders of this country created a nation ruled by laws, not men. Placing parental rights into the text of the Constitution ensures that law will defend the American family. A constitutional amendment will shield the child-parent relationship from government intrusion, regardless of who sits on the Supreme Court.

Not only does an amendment adequately address the threat posed by judges who refuse to recognize parental rights, but it also meets head-on the threat against the child-parent relationship posed by international law.

HOW AN AMENDMENT PROTECTS THE FAMILY FROM INTERNATIONAL LAW

As a legally binding international treaty, the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child is capable of permanently altering the role of the parent within the American family. If ratified, the UNCRC becomes the law of the land, unable to be held in check by state or national legislation. The only way to protect the rights of parents from the destructive policies contained in the UNCRC is through an amendment to the U.S. Constitution.

Presently, except in cases where a parent has been proven to be "unfit," American law presumes that the parent is acting in the best interests of the child, and defers to that parent's decision. The UNCRC, in contrast, supplants this traditional presumption in favor of parents with a new presumption in favor of the state.

The Senators who originally opposed the ratification of the UNCRC when it was originally signed by President Clinton in 1995 believed that the Convention marked a significant departure from the American concept of the relationship between state and child, and was incompatible with the right of parents to raise their children.

The only way to protect the vital role of parents from this cataclysmic shift is through amending the U.S. Constitution to reflect current Supreme Court doctrine which preserves the right of parents to direct the upbringing and education of their children.

That's why the Parental Rights Amendment is so important. If passed, the Parental Rights Amendment will protect and preserve the vital child-parent relationship for generations to come.

WHY NOW?

The judges on the Supreme Court will change over time, but the law will not. If the U.S. Constitution is amended to secure parental rights, the vital child-parent relationship will be effectively shielded from intrusion by the government.

Amending the constitution is an enormous task—requiring time, resources, vision, dedication, and hardworking people who will make it happen. But it is not impossible.

Timing is everything. Parental rights are in an uncertain state within the federal courts, and danger is on the way. In only a matter of time, international law could erase the rights that most American parents take for granted. That’s why time is of the essence. We can’t afford to wait until parental rights are gone before seeking to defend them—now is the time to take action.

You can play a vital role in the process of amending the Constitution by joining with ParentalRights.org in the fight to protect children and parents. If you believe that the vital role of parents in the lives of their children should be protected and preserved, then we need your participation in the campaign to pass the Parental Rights Amendment!

Sign the petition now to protect children by empowering parents, and recruit your friends to join the fight. 

Rebekah Pizana | National Coalition Director | ParentalRights.org | 540.645.9475 (c)
P.O. Box 1090, Purcellville, Virginia 20134 | Email: rebekah@parentalrights.org

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

ParentalRights.org logo

Sign the PetitionDonateVolunteerLearn MoreView Online
Nov. 6, 2014

Election Recap: It’s Time to Go!

For the cause of parental rights, the elections on November 4 were a huge win. We have witnessed a game-changer, and the time to act is upon us.

If the Parental Rights Amendment saw no other gains from this election, the significance of one fact alone must not be underestimated: For the first time since ParentalRights.Org’s founding in 2007, Harry Reid will no longer control the U.S. Senate.

As long as Harry Reid is leading the Senate, there has been no chance for the Parental Rights Amendment (PRA) to make it to a floor vote in that chamber. Democratic lawmakers we have worked with and talked with in the past have told us as much.

Democratic pollster Pat Caddell on Tuesday night pointed out that as leader of the Senate, Reid allowed only 19 amendments in that chamber during the last entire 2-year session of Congress. (That is, amendments to bills – not constitutional amendments!) Reid also led the charge to exercise the “nuclear option,” ending the chamber’s long-standing rule requiring a 60-vote super-majority to cut off debate.

In short, Cadell says, Reid “became a dictator” – a dictator with no interest in your parental rights.

The defeat of Reid’s party on Tuesday night will bring new leadership in the Senate, leadership that will be more open to the kind of bipartisan cooperation required to pass the Parental Rights Amendment (PRA).

To be sent to the states for ratification, the PRA needs a two-thirds vote in both the House and the Senate. The President doesn’t have to sign it. But both houses have to support it.

Now, to reach two-thirds, we have to have bipartisan support. Parental rights are not a partisan issue, and we as an organization do not rejoice in Tuesday’s victory as one of Republicans over Democrats. We need the support of pro-parent lawmakers on both sides of the aisle, and we support the rights of all parents -- conservatives, liberals, and everybody else.

But we do rejoice in the victory of parental rights lawmakers, so this excites us, too:not one current cosponsor of the Parental Rights Amendment seeking re-election lost his seat this week. Not one in the Senate. And not one in the House, where 64 cosponsors were returned to Congress for 2015.

With all of the issues in play this year, we are not claiming that support of parental rights is what got these incumbents re-elected. But with 65.5% of the vote going their way (on average – not including three who ran unopposed), it is safe to say thatcongressmen who cosponsor the Parental Rights Amendment are overwhelmingly supported by their constituents.

While we are excited by these gains, we know that nothing is guaranteed beyond the next election. 2016 could see even more support for parental rights, or it could see the pendulum swing back in the other direction.

We have one Congress. We have right now.

We have already begun plans to bring to 2015 our most coordinated and intense effort yet to pass the Parental Rights Amendment in Congress. We have spoken with lawmakers and allied organizations.

Now it is up to you.

Action Item

Please take the time in the next several weeks to talk about this issue with your family and friends. Tell them about the Pelletiers, the Funkhousers, or any of the countless families being torn apart for want of the PRA. Tell them of the dangers of the UN’s CRPD, which even now could raise its head in the volatile lame duck session.

Then invite them to sign up for alerts at ParentalRight.org/petition. Urge them to be a part of the push to make the PRA a reality in 2015.

We need your help. We need their help.

But with supportive lawmakers headed back to D.C. and Harry Reid out of the way, together we can make this Congress the time to get it done!

Sincerely,

Michael Ramey
Director of Communications & Research

Share This Online


Share 



 


Donate

Volunteer

Join the Discussion

Facebook

Google+

P.O. Box 1090 Purcellville, VA 20134 * (540)-751-1200 * info@parentalrights.org

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

ParentalRights.org logo

Sign the PetitionDonateVolunteerLearn MoreView Online
Oct. 28, 2014

One Family Strikes Back - How We Can Help

Are you tired of feeling like you’re taking a gamble every time you take your child to the emergency room? Do you pray they don’t hurt themselves lest someone you don’t know should break up your family with false allegations?

From Justina Pelletier in Massachusetts to Isaiah Rider in Illinois to Kayla and Hannah Diegel in Arizona, children all over the country are being taken from parents accused of “medical neglect.” And who is there to stand up for them?

That’s the question faced by one family from Clarke County, Virginia, when this happened to them. And their answer?

It’s time we put a stop to the fear and take back our parental rights!

Clarke County, Virginia – Practicing Without a License

Lane Funkhouser, his wife Susan, and their two children were all very sick. Their family doctor could not diagnose the problem, and school attendance became an issue for the children. So the parents decided to home school them while they continued to seek a diagnosis and treatment.

That led to truancy charges, which were quickly dismissed. But in the process, social services investigator Michael Austin of Clarke County’s Department of Social Services (DSS) got involved. He decided that Susan was suffering from Munchausen Syndrome by Proxy, a psychological condition whereby a parent seeks attention for herself (or himself) by faking a serious illness in their child.

Austin is not a doctor, nor a psychologist. He is not any kind of medical professional at all. His opinion is no more qualified than yours or mine. (Much less if you are in a medical profession!) But his opinion caused a lot of trouble for the Funkhousers.

As it turns out, the family finally found a doctor able to diagnose their condition. The children had a combination of strep, a parasite, and a bacterial infection calledClostridium difficile, or C. diff. The doctor confirmed his diagnosis with lab results, and prescribed treatment for the children.

That treatment included a visit to Rockingham Memorial Hospital in nearby Shenandoah County. And there, even in the face of valid lab results and a conflicting diagnosis from a licensed physician, the hospital workers seem to have acted on the unqualified diagnosis that Austin had made.

So on July 25, 2012, Shenandoah County social workers removed the children from their home. They took them back to the ER at Rockingham, only to find that – sure enough – they were diagnosed with C. diff and prescribed medication. But the social workers did not let up from pursuing Austin’s theory.

Instead, they placed the children in a group foster home. A week later, even in light of so much medical evidence that the children were actually sick, the social workers doubled down in court to defend their decision to remove the children. As a result, the judge agreed to let them continue their investigation and keep the children in foster care.

While in the home, the couple’s son injured his ankle, and home staff, assuring him it was nothing serious, refused to take him to a doctor. Both children were exposed to foster children with violent criminal and drug histories.

Five weeks later, on August 29, the children were returned home. The parents immediately took their son to the doctor, where he was treated for a broken – yes,broken – ankle that had been left untreated for three weeks.

On top of that, the children had also been exposed to tuberculosis while in the home, adding a year of anti-tuberculosis drugs to their already exhaustive medical regimen.

About a month later, Shenandoah County DSS dismissed the original allegation of Munchausen by Proxy and closed their investigation. The Funkhousers received a letter to that effect on October 16.

Then, in a parting shot, social workers again went to court on November 7 to insist the family still needed court supervision. Fortunately, the judge disagreed and ended the county’s involvement.

Unfortunately, so much damage had already been done, requiring months of counseling for the children after all that they had suffered at the hands of DSS.

And that’s when the Funkhousers decided to strike back. Not for themselves, or even for their kids – but to send a signal that parents in America should not have to live in fear of the courts every time their child gets sick or needs a trip to the ER.

And that’s when they contacted ParentalRights.Org.

Finding Legal Help, Taking the Battle to the State

Unfortunately, since ParentalRights.Org is a political lobbying organization we do not have lawyers on staff. What we do have, however, is a terrific working relationship with the Home School Legal Defense Association (HSLDA). So we forwarded the Funkhouser story to them, and their special legal team was able to join local lawyer Daniel Harvill in taking the case.

The Funkhousers are suing Michael Austin, the Shenandoah County caseworkers, and the employees of the children’s home for negligence and misconduct. In HSLDA’s own words, “in this case, the government needs a sharp reminder that families have rights.”

And we heartily agree, which is one reason we have launched the new Parental Rights Foundation.

We receive hundreds of requests every year from families just like the Funkhousers who need someone to help them stand up for their rights. We can forward a few of these to allies like HSLDA, but we simply have to tell so many more to look elsewhere. But who else really specializes in this area of law?

That’s why we set a goal of $100,000 to launch this important enterprise, as we announced just a few weeks ago. To date, we have raised more than $33,000 – but we still need your help to make the Foundation a reality!

Fully funded, the Parental Rights Foundation can provide scholarly research to lawmakers and amicus briefs to judges to help shape parental rights policy in our courtrooms. And we can hire a lawyer to take on cases like these that will shape parental rights precedent for years to come.

With your help, we can change the landscape of parental rights law for the better, as the Funkhousers and HSLDA are doing now.

Please take a moment today to make your most generous possible donation to the Parental Rights Foundation. Your gift is tax deductible, and will move us toward our goal of educating, informing, and defending to preserve your parental rights.

Sincerely,

Michael Ramey
Director of Communications & Research
 
Our thanks to HSLDA for contributing to this article.


Florida Notice: A COPY OF THE OFFICIAL REGISTRATION AND FINANCIAL INFORMATION MAY BE OBTAINED FROM THE DIVISION OF CONSUMER SERVICES BY CALLING TOLL-FREE (800-435-7352) WITHIN THE STATE. REGISTRATION DOES NOT IMPLY ENDORSEMENT, APPROVAL, OR RECOMMENDATION BY THE STATE.

Maryland Notice: A copy of ParentalRights.Org’s financial statement is available by request to ParentalRights.Org at the address below.

Virginia Notice: A financial statement is available from the State Office of Consumer Affairs in the Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services upon request.

Washington Notice: The registration statement required by the Charitable Solicitation Act is on file with the Washington Secretary of State.

 

Share This Online


Share 



 


Donate

Volunteer

Join the Discussion

Facebook

Google+

P.O. Box 1090 Purcellville, VA 20134 * (540)-751-1200 * info@parentalrights.org

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

ParentalRights.org logo

Sign the PetitionDonateVolunteerLearn MoreView Online
Oct. 22, 2014

Medical Kidnapping on the Rise?

“Baby Sammy” NikolayevJustina PelletierIsaiah RiderKayla and Hannah Diegel.Kathryn Blalock.

While we don’t yet have the statistics, it sure looks like cases of medical kidnapping are on the rise – cases where fit and loving parents are losing custody of their children because a doctor or hospital wants to make the child’s medical decisions instead. In some cases, it appears the grabs may even be carried out, not for the health interests of the child, but for the research interests of the hospital.

This is getting out of control. And something must be done to stop it.

That’s why we have recently launched the Parental Rights Foundation, with three specific goals.

First, we want to educate the public. We want to open eyes to this growing problem, to increase the number of voices being raised against it. To begin with, we want to produce a video – to be available free online – to help parents know what their rights are in the medical setting.

Second, we want to produce “friend of the court” briefs for families in these cases. We want to do the research to know what the statistics really are. And we want to make sure the courts know the truth.

We are too small to take on these cases ourselves, but the local lawyers who do step up often have insufficient specific subject-area knowledge. By submitting an amicus brief, we can provide the parental rights expertise they might otherwise lack.

Finally, ultimately, we do want to take on some of these cases ourselves. We want to take on the cases that shape the future of parental rights law. We won’t be able to do this right away, but with your help we can move in that direction.

But we can’t do any of this without your help.

When we launched the Parental Rights Foundation a few weeks ago, we announced a goal of $100,000 to get it moving. Through many generous gifts, we have now reached $27,076.34. That is a terrific start, but we still have a long way to go.

Please take a moment right now to make your most generous tax-deductible gift to the Parental Rights Foundation. Your donation will help us launch this vital work to protect families by defending parental rights.

We must stand up now. The way this medical kidnapping trend is accelerating, there is simply no more time to lose.

Sincerely,

Michael Ramey
Director of Communications & Research
 

Florida Notice: A COPY OF THE OFFICIAL REGISTRATION AND FINANCIAL INFORMATION MAY BE OBTAINED FROM THE DIVISION OF CONSUMER SERVICES BY CALLING TOLL-FREE (800-435-7352) WITHIN THE STATE. REGISTRATION DOES NOT IMPLY ENDORSEMENT, APPROVAL, OR RECOMMENDATION BY THE STATE.

Maryland Notice: A copy of ParentalRights.Org’s financial statement is available by request to ParentalRights.Org at the address below.

Virginia Notice: A financial statement is available from the State Office of Consumer Affairs in the Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services upon request.

Washington Notice: The registration statement required by the Charitable Solicitation Act is on file with the Washington Secretary of State.


 

Share This Online


Share 



 


Donate

Volunteer

Join the Discussion

Facebook

Google+

P.O. Box 1090 Purcellville, VA 20134 * (540)-751-1200 * info@parentalrights.org

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Page last updated 11/06/14