Thought you might be interested in this w/r/t our old discussion on how families are federal:
This happened in Canada – where a court overturned a father’s “grounding” of his daughter, ruling that it was excessive. This is why I think that the family is a separate sphere, rather than the most local court of state and church.
According to Canada’s CBC News, the Quebec Court of Appeal in Montreal on Tuesday (January 13) heard arguments in the case of a Gatineau father seeking clarification of parental rights after his daughter took him to court in June 2008 and won a judgement to overturn a grounding he had imposed on her for disobedience. In the original case, decided by Judge Suzanne Tessier of the Quebec Superior Court, the man’s 12-year-old daughter challenged his right to prohibit her from attending a school trip after she defied his orders to stay off the internet. He imposed that rule when he learned the girl was posting “inappropriate” pictures of herself on adult dating sites, but the pre-teen circumvented his parenting by using a friend’s computer instead. As a result, the father told her she could not attend the three-day overnight trip that her school was taking to celebrate their graduation from sixth grade. Judge Tessier ruled that the father had in fact overstepped his authority, and that the punishment was too severe.
Despite the apparent intrusion by the court in this case and the considerable publicity it has garnered, it is likely this is in fact a basic, run-of-the-mill custody dispute. When the parents could not agree on the terms of their daughter’s punishment (since both parents had forbidden her internet privileges, but disagreed on whether to ground her from the trip), the court stepped in to decide for them. The daughter was represented in her suit by the court-appointed ad-litem attorney who had been representing her interests throughout her parents’ decade-long custody battle. All publicity to the contrary, this apparently was not a case of court versus parent, but of the courts deciding for one parent and against the other. As terrible as the outcome may be, that is just how it is in family courts.
Still, this case with all its alarmist publicity does paint a pretty fair picture of what life could come to look like under the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC). [Read the rest of the article.]