Unable to pay child support--No Fault Divorce--Some parents treated like indentured servants
"Divorce tears marriage apart. It desolates both husband and wife. It leaves the children not only in tears but also in misery. We do not deny that there can be serious disagreement between husband and wife, but divorce is not the solution. When husband and wife have a disagreement, they should reflect, pray, sit together and discuss. Accept fault where you are wrong, ask for pardon, or consult a priest or other spiritual adviser, but do not divorce."
~~Francis Cardinal Arinze
Date: Fri, Sep 16, 2011 at 7:11 PM
Mike Brunker, the Projects Team editor for msnbc.com says, "But in what might seem like an un-American plot twist from a Charles Dickens' novel, advocates for the poor say some parents are wrongly being locked away without any regard for their ability to pay — sometimes without the benefit of legal representation."
Brunker raises concerns about the practice of civil court judges jailing people without the person even having a lawyer. The Fifth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution specifies that no person shall be be deprived of liberty or property, without due process of law.
The Coalition for Divorce Reform raises other concerns. In and e-mail interview, Beverly Willett, the Vice Chair for the Coalition says the no-fault divorce system is gravely unjust.
No-fault divorce occurs when divorce is granted to the person filing for divorce, even though the other spouse has committed no offense against marriage such as adultery, extreme cruelty, or gross neglect of duty.
"When I married my wife, I took my vows seriously and I lived up to my promises," says Nolan. "My wife, on the other hand chose to quit fulfilling her vows. Though marriage is a contract, the courts don't care whether a husband upheld his obligations while the wife quit. On the contrary, my wife, who breached the contract was rewarded by the Court and I was penalized."
These same five states that don't ensure the accused person's right to an attorney refer to marriage as a contract in their laws. In typical contract law, the party who breaches the contract is held responsible to make good to the party who has been wronged. In Ohio Law "Husband and wife contract towards each other obligations of mutual respect, fidelity, and support" (3103.01). Florida specifies that ordained ministers in communion with some church "may solemnize the rights of matrimonial contract" (741.07(1)). In Georgia, marriage is a contract and written marriage contracts "shall be liberally construed to carry into effect the intention of the parties" (§ 19-3-1, 19-3-63). Maine's domestic relations law has as its goal "to nurture, sustain and protect the traditional monogamous family unit in Maine society, its moral imperatives, its economic function and its unique contribution to the rearing of healthy children" (§650-1-B).
Gregory Lynne, who lost his children in a no-force divorce in Caroline County Virginia, says, "After divorce, the non-custodial parents are robbed of their identities as persons. Hanging-on, teetering between a jail cell and sub-standard wages (after paying child support,) and limited by child visitation orders, discarded parents live a tenuous existence. Many are discouraged and lose hope of ever raising their children to their full potential. Instead, they are treated like indentured servants, pimped by the state to 'turn economic tricks' as-if they deserved to be objects of underworld exploitation for the benefit of their absentee families."