Sunday

Any parent who is deprived of his or her child, even though temporarily, suffers grievous loss.


Such loss deserves extensive due process protection.




According to attorney Rachelle E. Hill, of Bean, Kinney and Korman, and a judge, that is precisely the claim. Their lawyer has written the offices of A Voice for Men to demand that we remove a post from the forums containing the note.
It is not going to happen.
The text of the note was posted to our forums months ago. We considered doing a feature story on it at the time, but opted not to because we had no credible corroboration that the story was factual.
Attorney Hill, her law firm, and the suicide victim’s former wife have now resolved that matter to our satisfaction. The demand letter itself is sufficient for us to believe that the following note is genuine.*
The love that my daughter and I shared was truly special. She is a such a sweet, kind and gentle spirit. I am so sorry that I will not be there to see her grow into a beautiful woman. It absolutely crushed me to not be in her life over the last three years. I worked very hard as a father to build her confidence and self-esteem. She is smart, funny and considerate, but she didn’t know it yet. I pray that she realizes her strengths and her confidence in herself will continue to grow. I love you dearly, [name redacted].
My son [name redacted] was just entering Kindergarten, when I lost access to him. He is gregarious, outgoing and a great athlete. He is smart and fearless. He could have just as much fun by himself as he could with other kids. Even the older boys in our neighbourhood wanted to play with [name redacted]. It absolutely breaks my heart that I will not be able to help him grow into a man. I love you to, [name redacted]. I miss you both so much.
My identity was taken from me, as result of this process. When it began, I was a commercial real estate broker with CB Richard Ellis. I lived by the Golden rule and made a living by bringing parties together and finding the common ground. My reputation as a broker was built on my honesty and integrity. When it ended, I was broke, homeless, unemployed and had no visitation with my own children.
I had no confidence and was paralyzed with fear that I would be going to jail whenever my ex-wife wanted. Nothing I could say or do would stop it. This is what being to death or ‘targeted’ by a psychopath looks like. This is the outcome. I didn’t somehow change into a ‘high-conflict’ person or lose my ability to steer clear of the law. I’ve had never been arrested, depressed, homeless or suicidal before this process. The stress and pressure applied to me was deliberate and nothing I could do or say would get me any relief. Nothing I or my attorneys said to my ex-wife’s attorney or to the Court made any difference. Truth, facts, evidence or even the best interest of my children had no affect on the outcome.
The family court system is broken, but from my experience, it is not the laws, its the lawyers. They feed off of the conflict. They are not hired to reduce conflict or protect the best interest of children, which is why third parties need to be involved. It should be mandatory for children to have a guardian ad litem, with extensive training in abuse and aggression.
It is absolutely shameful that the Fairfax County Court did nothing to intervene or understand the ongoing conflict. Judge Randy Bellows also used the Children as punishment, by withholding access for failing to fax a receipt. The entire conflict centered around the denial of access to the children, it was inconceivable to me that he would use children like this. This is exactly what my ex-wife was doing and now Judge Bellows was doing it for her.
To all my family, friends and the people that supported me through this process, I am so sorry. I know my reactions and behavior throughout this process did not always make sense. None of this made sense to me either. I had no help and the only suggestion I got from my attorneys was to remain silent.
At first, I did what I was told, remained silent and listened to my attorneys. Then after I had given my ex-wife full custody to try and appease her, I learned about Psychopathy and emailed Dr. Samenow about my concerns and asked him for help. Of course, I was ignored. As the conflict continued, I was forced to defend myself. When that didn’t work, I thought I could get the help I needed by speaking out. There is no right or wrong way to defend yourself from abuse. Naively, I thought that abuse was abuse and it would be recognized and something would be done. I thought speaking out would end the abuse or at least get them to back off. It didn’t. When no one did anything they were emboldened.
I took my own life because I had come to the conclusion that there was nothing I could do or say to end the abuse. Every time I got up off my knees, I would get knocked back down. They were not going to let me be the father I wanted to be to my children. People may think I am a coward for giving up on my children, but I didn’t see how I was going to heal from this. I have no money for an attorney, therapy or medication. I have lost four jobs because of this process. I was going to be at their mercy for the rest of my life and they had shown me none.
Being alienated, legally abused, emotionally abused, isolated and financially ruined are all a recipe for suicide. I wish I were stronger to keep going, but the emotional pain and fear of going to court and jail [because of exorbitant child support] became overwhelming. I became paralyzed with fear. I couldn’t flee and I could not fight. I was never going to be allowed to heal or recover. I wish I were better at articulating the psychological and emotional trauma I experienced.
I could fill a book with all the lies and mysterious rulings of the Court. Never have I experienced this kind of pain. I asked for help, but good men did nothing and evil prevailed. All I wanted was a Guardian Ad Litem for my children. Any third party would have been easily been able to confirm or refute all of my allegations, which is why none was ever appointed to protect the children or reduce the conflict.
Abuse is about power and control. Stand up for the abused and speak out. If someone speaks out about abuse, believe them.
Please teach my children empathy and about emotional invalidation and ‘gas-lighting’ or they may end up like me.
God have mercy on my soul.
Chris Mackney
This link will give you a copy of demand letter, which like the suicide note, has the children’s names redacted.
Within that document we note that an Arlington County, Virginia judge has ruled that Dina Mackney, the widow of this suicide victim, is authorized to seek reasonable legal remedies to force a large number of websites, where this information has already been made available, to remove the information in question.
We reject the notion that our publication is in violation of copyright laws, and that the suicide note is not covered by fair use statutes.
We also believe, given the horrific state of our family courts, it is in the compelling public interest that his final words be published and disseminated as robustly as possible.
The chief responsibility of A Voice for Men is advocacy for men who have been trampled in precisely the ways outlined in this tragic note, and to do whatever is within our means to address the disproportionate suicide rate in men, especially as it relates to high conflict divorces.
If what Mr. Mackney said in his final note is true, and we have no reason to believe that what amounts to his dying words are less than that, then what this threatened legal action represents is an attempt by his former wife to chase him down – even into the grave – to issue the final and complete edict for his silence in the face of horrendous abuse.
It is an act which will also probably eliminate any chance those children ever have to know how their father felt and what he was thinking before taking his own life.
I will gladly take residence in my own grave before I comply with that kind of agenda.
  • Addendum – the suicide note provided here is not complete. The complete version of the letter is available here:

Editorial Update: See here for more on the story.–DE

Editorial Update 2:* See also how The Raw Story is serving you a half-cooked story. -DE


Published on May 23, 2012 - *I do not own the video*
Copyright Disclaimer Under Section 107 of the Copyright Act 1976, allowance is made for "fair use" for purposes such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching, scholarship, and research. Fair use is a use permitted by copyright statute that might otherwise be infringing. Non-profit, educational or personal use tips the balance in favor of fair use. No Copyright Intended.

Parent’s rights have been recognized as being “essential to the orderly pursuit of happiness by free man.” Meyer v. Nebraska, 262 US 390; 43 S Ct 625, (1923).

It would seem that maintaining the father’s love and authority would be crucial when a child’s life is turned upside down by divorce. Yet, family courts routinely deprive children of one parent, usually the father, restricting his time with his child to about six days a month.
The courts pompously assert they are invoking "the best interest of the child," but how can it be in the best interest of children to make them forfeit one parent?
We hear many pious comments about the need for fathers to be involved in the upbringing of their children. This need should be even more important in times of emotional stress, such as divorce, than the need for fathers to play ball with their kids in an intact family.
Some states are considering legislation that establishes a presumption of shared parenting whereby divorced parents divide equally both time and authority over the children. This enables children to maintain strong ties to both parents.
When primary or sole custody is given to the mother, the father becomes merely a visitor in the child’s life (that’s why it’s called "visitation"), whose only value is to mail a paycheck and be an occasional baby sitter. The father loses his parental authority and fades out of his own child’s life.
An argument is sometimes made that shuttling back and forth between two homes might be upsetting or a nuisance, but there is no more shuttling with equal custody (where parents, for example, get alternating weeks) than with the typical mother-custody/father-visitation schedule (where the father gets two weekends a month plus some Wednesday evenings). Do the math; both plans have about the same number of shuttles between homes.
An argument is also made that giving custody primarily to the mother promotes stability, but the need for stability is really a reason for shared custody. The stability of parental relationships is a great deal more important than contact with material things.
Americans have always assumed that parents share decision-making authority because only parents can determine what is in the best interest of their own children. As recently as 2000, the Supreme Court in Troxel v. Granville reaffirmed this principle and rejected the argument that a judge could supersede a fit parent’s judgment about his child’s "best interest."
Nevertheless, in what Stephen Baskerville calls a "silent revolution," millions of divorced parents have had their fundamental right to decide what is in the best interest of their own children taken away and given instead to a vast array of government officials and so-called "experts" such as judges, lawyers, psychologists, psychiatrists, social workers, child protective services, child support enforcement agents, mediators, counselors, parenting classes, and feminist groups.
This shift began in the 1970s after the spread of unilateral divorce was followed by the creation of a giant federal child support-enforcement bureaucracy. The notion that this mix of government officials and government-appointed advisers can dictate what is the best interest of the child rather than a child’s own parents is how liberals and feminists are fulfilling their goal that "it takes a village (i.e., the government) to raise a child."
An example of the bias against fathers can be seen in the Responsible Fatherhood Act of 2007 recently introduced by Sens. Barack Obama, D-Ill., and Evan Bayh, D-Ind. The bill mentions "child support" 65 times, but not once does it mention parenting time, custody, visitation, or access denial.
 Baskerville’s new book, "Taken into Custody: The War Against Fatherhood, Marriage, and the Family" (Cumberland House, $24.95), provides a copiously documented description of society’s injustices to children who have been deprived of their fathers and of fathers who have been deprived of their children. This book is a tremendous and much-needed report on how family courts and government policies are harming children.
It is a breakthrough for shared parenting that a noncustodial father, Robert Pedersen, was recently named runner-up in the nationwide Best Life Magazine’s "Hero Dad" Contest. Pedersen is only allowed 6 to 8 days a month with his two children from a previous marriage.
The courts pompously assert they are invoking "the best interest of the child," but how can it be in the best interest of children to make them forfeit one parent?
Pedersen has devised a novel way to demonstrate the importance of fathers to children of divorced parents. He is leading an "Equal Parenting Bike Ride" starting in Lansing, Mich., on Aug. 11 and culminating with an Aug. 18 rally in Washington, D.C.

Even when blood relationships are strained, parents retain vital interest in preventing irretrievable destruction of their family life; if anything, persons faced with forced dissolution of their parental rights have more critical need for procedural protections than do those resisting state intervention into ongoing family affairs. Santosky v. Kramer, 102 S Ct 1388; 455 US 745, (1982).

Parents have a fundamental constitutionally protected interest in continuity of legal bond with their children. Matter of Delaney, 617 P 2d 886, Oklahoma (1980).

The liberty interest of the family encompasses an interest in retaining custody of one’s children and, thus, a state may not interfere with a parent’s custodial rights absent due process protections. Langton v. Maloney, 527 F Supp 538, D.C. Conn. (1981).

Parent’s right to custody of child is a right encompassed within protection of this amendment which may not be interfered with under guise of protecting public interest by legislative action which is arbitrary or without reasonable relation to some purpose within competency of state to effect. Regenold v. Baby Fold, Inc., 369 NE 2d 858; 68 Ill 2d 419, appeal dismissed 98 S Ct 1598, 435 US 963, IL, (1977).

Parent’s interest in custody of her children is a liberty interest which has received considerable constitutional protection; a parent who is deprived of custody of his or her child, even though temporarily, suffers thereby grievous loss and such loss deserves extensive due process protection. In the Interest of Cooper, 621 P 2d 437; 5 Kansas App Div 2d 584, (1980).

The Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment requires that severance in the parent-child relationship caused by the state occur only with rigorous protections for individual liberty interests at stake. Bell v. City of Milwaukee, 746 F 2d 1205; US Ct App 7th Cir WI, (1984).

Father enjoys the right to associate with his children which is guaranteed by this amendment (First) as incorporated in Amendment 14, or which is embodied in the concept of “liberty” as that word is used in the Due Process Clause of the 14th Amendment and Equal Protection Clause of the 14th Amendment. Mabra v. Schmidt, 356 F Supp 620; DC, WI (1973).

“Separated as our issue is from that of the future interests of the children, we have before us the elemental question whether a court of a state, where a mother is neither domiciled, resident nor present, may cut off her immediate right to the care, custody, management and companionship of her minor children without having jurisdiction over her in personam. Rights far more precious to appellant than property rights will be cut off if she is to be bound by the Wisconsin award of custody.” May v. Anderson, 345 US 528, 533; 73 S Ct 840, 843, (1952).

A parent’s right to care and companionship of his or her children are so fundamental, as to be guaranteed protection under the First, Ninth, and Fourteenth Amendments of the United States Constitution. In re: J.S. and C., 324 A 2d 90; supra 129 NJ Super, at 489.

The Court stressed, “the parent-child relationship is an important interest that undeniably warrants deference and, absent a powerful countervailing interest, protection.” A parent’s interest in the companionship, care, custody and management of his or her children rises to a constitutionally secured right, given the centrality of family life as the focus for personal meaning and responsibility. Stanley v. Illinois, 405 US 645, 651; 92 S Ct 1208, (1972).


Fathers are dying to see their children, both figuratively and literally.

Earlier this week, I found out that a supporter who was in a highly contested custody battle took his own life. It is the sixth known suicide of TFRM page supporters. 

I say “known” because there were probably more, a lot more, but they were not confirmed. 


The adversarial nature of Family Court pits parents against each other in an extremely high stakes manner. False accusations and an over-zealous issuance of Temporary Restraining Orders (TROs) help to create an environment where fathers find themselves completely removed from the children’s lives and forced to spend thousands, sometimes tens of thousands, of dollars to regain contact. 

These circumstances create a scenario in which many fathers are left mentally, physically, and spiritually broken. They began to contemplate suicide. Sadly, for some, it seems like the only remaining option.

Suicide is not the answer. It creates more pain. It leaves a tarnished legacy for the person and their children. If these thoughts are crossing you mind, please seek help. The national suicide hotline is staffed twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week. The number is 1-800-273-8255. 

With respect,

Chris Colbert

We only support organizations who show an understanding that children need both parents, and that either parent is equally capable of the choice to perpetrate hate or declare peace.

Fathers are dying to see their children, both figuratively and literally. Earlier this week, I found out that a...
Posted by The Fathers' Rights Movement on Sunday, October 11, 2015

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