GRAND FORKS – A couple here who were sued by the man’s parents for visitation with the grandchildren is appealing the case to the state Supreme Court.These visitation laws foolishly undermine parental authority, as can be seen in this case.
That’s after a judge confirmed his ruling that Cory Bjerke and his longtime partner, Naomi Sterf, must allow their 16-year-old to visit her grandparents any time she wishes, and also must allow the couple’s other two younger children to see Bjerke’s parents.
State law says grandparents may be given visitation, as long as it’s in the children’s best interests and doesn’t interfere with the parent-child relationship.
Bjerke and Sterf argue the 16-year-old’s unfettered visitation rights laid out in the order by Grand Forks County District Court Judge Lawrence Jahnke do interfere with their parent-child relationship.
It is especially infuriating when the judge orders an outrageous and unconstitutional visitation schedule, and then disavows any responsibility for it:
The judge wrote that he hoped the bad feeling between the two sets of adults could be set aside, especially as holidays approached.Judge Jahnke fractured that relationship by ordering the parents to let their kids run off to the grandparents whenever they please. The parental responsibilities are with the parents, not the grandparents, and the parents need the authority to use their own judgment without the micro-management by an a-hole judge like Judge Jahnke.
“It’s time for the Respondents and Petitioners, for the sake of their children and grandchildren, to once again attempt to re-establish a civil dialogue with one another. They can’t expect the court to repair their fractured relationship,” Jahnke wrote. “Only they themselves can do it.”