Thursday, March 12, 2009

Cooking Rights and Responsibilities

News of the death of James Cook, the divorced Californian who led the fight for custodial rights after being told by a judge that he couldn't share equally in the life of his son, serves as a fulcrum for two other newsmaking fathers who are seesawing public opinion.

Taking perceptions of caregiving dads higher is David Goldman, whose Brazilian wife took their son to her native country, remarried and never let the son return to his American father. Brazilian courts supported what was labeled "kidnapping" in America. However, the mother's passing has given the father another chance at providing for his now 9-year-old. The courts awarded the child to his Brazilian stepfather, but a resolution fairer to Goldman is being talked about at the highest diplomatic levels.

On the other hand, former NFL star Travis Henry is adding fuel to the pyre built by "deadbeat dads." He says he loves all nine of the kids, ages 3 through 11, he has had with nine different moms. He says he understands that he is responsible for them ... even as he suggests not all the moms were truthful in their dealings with him. However, the headlines are going to be all about how his multi-mllion dollar earnings are not being used to pay his child support payments.

It is too bad Henry, Goldman, actually all of us, will no longer have Cook, who went on to volunteer for children scarred by war experience, to call on as an adviser for the right things to do.

No comments: