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The hidden half of domestic violence

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 Even Giuliani Now "Hung Out to Dry"

Thanks to Michael Austin for this account of the bigotry and
ignorance of New York family courts, even in Giuliani's case.
If the courts imagines that it has authority to meddle in the
social life of parents, with no demonstrable harm to the
children, why not also place similar demeaning restrictions
on the mother?  On the same principle, we would not be
surprised to see busy-body social workers soon threatening
to take children even from married parents, if they don't like
a friend of one of the parents.  But in reality, this judge lied
when she claimed that this decision has anything to do with
"the best interest of the children."

Instead, she is simply abusing judicial discretion for the usual
purpose of sabotaging the relationship of children with their
father, in order to ensure maximum bilking of the Federal
government for child support collection incentive payments.
If corrupt and incompetent family courts treat the hero of
9-11 this way, what chance does a regular father have?
These dingbat "social engineers" have got to be stopped
or there will be nothing of America left worth fighting for.


+ + + + + + + + + + + + + + + + + + + + + + + + + + + + +

Rudi can manage NYC's 9/11 but not his own son?
Surely, this reveals the travesty of the 'system' and
deserves nationwide demonstrations.  MFA

The New York Times
March 7, 2002

Judge Denies Giuliani's Request for Joint Custody

Rudolph W. Giuliani has been lauded worldwide for his stalwart leadership
after the Sept. 11 attacks, but the judge handling the former mayor's
divorce case suggested yesterday that he had been less laudable in his
private life and that his years in office had hurt his relationship with
his children.

In a ruling yesterday, the judge, Judith J. Gische of State Supreme Court
in Manhattan, denied a request by the former mayor for joint custody of
his son. Justice Gische also imposed a visitation schedule that continued
limits on contact between Mr. Giuliani's children and his companion,
Judith Nathan, that were imposed last May.

Justice Gische refused to change the restrictions that forbid the
children - Andrew, 15, and Caroline, 12 - to spend overnight visits with
Mr. Giuliani if Ms. Nathan is also spending the night. She asserted that
Mr. Giuliani's relationship with the children needed to be rebuilt without
competition from Ms. Nathan.

"During the eight years that plaintiff was in public office and more
profoundly in his last four months in office, plaintiff's pressing public
obligations often limited the time he had to spend with the children," the
judge wrote. "The children need to establish a new routine of time spent
with their father without worrying about competing for his attention."

Justice Gische did lift some restrictions on contact with Ms. Nathan.
Except for overnights, Ms. Nathan is now permitted to be in the presence
of the children. Until now, the judge had imposed a complete ban.

The judge's decision prompted Mr. Giuliani's aides to disclose for the
first time that he has his own apartment in Manhattan. He left Gracie
Mansion last spring and had been staying with a friend, Howard Koeppel,
and Mr. Koeppel's partner, Mark Hsiao. The aides would not say where the
apartment was, citing security issues.

Regarding Ms. Nathan, who is referred to as J.N. in the court papers,
Justice Gische wrote: "Although the children have met J.N. at least once,
they can hardly be said to have a comfortable, familiar relationship with
her. This needs to develop over time."

She added, "The record before this court reveals that the children are
not, at this time, psychologically ready to have overnight visits with
their father that include J.N. staying overnight as well. It is unclear
exactly when they will be ready."

Mr. Giuliani's lawyer, Raoul L. Felder, denounced the ruling and disputed
the absent-father characterization. "The judge's decision is just plain
inaccurate," Mr. Felder said. "He has been to every one of these
children's events except one since Sept. 11. Very few fathers in New York
could match that record."

Helene Brezinsky, a lawyer for Mr. Giuliani's estranged wife, Donna
Hanover, said, "We are pleased that the court accepted Donna's view that
overnights with Rudy's girlfriend are not appropriate and as always
Donna's only concern is for the best interests of her children."

Through a spokesman, Ms. Nathan said, "I love the mayor very much and
I look forward to all of these issues being resolved."

Justice Gische yesterday also set June 5, 6 and 7 as the dates for the
divorce trial. But most of her ruling focused on custodial issues, and the
judge said that she had sought to clear up conflicting claims regarding
the children's wishes by interviewing them Feb. 4. She also noted that Mr.
Giuliani and Ms. Hanover had failed to reach any agreement on permanent
custody and that "child related disputes have only intensified" since the
proceedings began.

"At this point the court no longer has any reason to be optimistic," the
judge wrote. "The court, therefore, will proceed with the appointment of
a mental heath professional as a forensic evaluator on the issues of
permanent custody and visitation."

The judge granted Mr. Giuliani visits from his children every other

The judge also ruled that the children should have separate midweek
dinners with their father. Vacations and holidays are to be shared, with
the children kept together.

Mr. Felder said he would ask the judge to rehear arguments on the
visitation schedule. He said Justice Gische had ignored an effort by Mr.
Giuliani to lay out his schedule a year in advance to allow for a more
customized visitation plan.

"He wants to spend more time with the kids than the judge wants him
to spend," Mr. Felder said.

But the judge rejected that request. "A more traditional visitation
schedule reflects the historical division of responsibility for the
children in this family," she wrote.

Copyright 2002 The New York Times Company
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