Two Years into Iraq War, Little Has Been Done to Protect the Rights of Military Fathers

When Gary, a US Navy SEAL, deployed to Afghanistan in the wake of the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center, he never dreamed that his service to his country would cost him his little son. Gary’s son was not taken from him by a terrorist or a kidnapper. This 18-year Navy veteran with an unblemished military and civilian record was effectively stripped of his right to be a father by a California court.

Laws granting deployed soldiers special protections against civil legal actions date back to the Civil War. However, few of these protections extend to family courts and family law. As a result, military men’s service to their country often creates the conditions under which they can become victims of terrible injustices. Two years into the Gulf War and three and half years into the war on terror, both federal and state governments have failed to address the family law issues which military men and fathers face.

Gary told his story on His Side with Glenn Sacks on March 13, 2005. Joining Glenn and Gary was family law attorney Jeffery M. Leving, author of Fathers’ Rights: Hard-hitting and Fair Advice for Every Father Involved in a Custody Dispute.

To learn more, see:

  • Glenn’s column The Betrayal of the Military Father (Los Angeles Daily News, 5/4/03)
  • Glenn’s co-authored column Military Service Costs Some Men Their Children (Honolulu Star-Bulletin, 3/16/04)
  • Glenn’s co-authored column Defrauded Veterans Have Mixed Emotions on Veterans Day (Daily Breeze [Los Angeles], 11/11/03)
  • Glenn’s co-authored column Families and the War (Washington Times, 11/21/02)
  • Glenn’s co-authored column Will Some Reservists’ Homecoming Be a Jail Cell? (Chicago Sun-Times, 3/3/04)
  • Phyllis Schlafly’s Reservists deserve protection from family-court mischief (Townhall, 2/28/05)
  • His Side: A Hero’s Service Costs Him His Right to be a Father (4/6/03)
  • Read “Sean’s Song,” the Navy Lullaby Gary Wrote and Used to Sing to the Little Son Who Was Taken From Him