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February 22, 2006


Alan Rusmisel

Virtual Visitation (from 2002)MassNews

Virtual visitation via the Internet is now becoming another blow to the well being of our children. Family courts are implementing virtual visitation orders to non-custodial parents in custody disputes to allow one of the two parties (most often the mother) to move hundreds or thousands of miles away with the children of the marriage. Obviously, the children have no say in these arrangements. I can picture a 4 or 5 year old responding to the question "where is your daddy?" My daddy lives in our computer right next to Nickelodeon.
Last week was my son's birthday. I baked him his favorite kind of birthday cake with 14 candles and realized that my little buddy was not little anymore. To celebrate we went to the Birmingham International Speedway for the All-Star racing event. On Sunday we spent the afternoon watching the Winston Cup race in Talladega on TV. After the race, we went to the video store and together picked out a movie that we would both enjoy and returned home to eat homemade beef stew and talk about school and girls and then watch the movie together. My son told me it was one of the best birthdays he had ever had. I would like any and all Family Court judges to explain to me how this memorable experience can be duplicated or replaced by a plastic box full of electronics and a phone line.
Alan Rusmisel
Alabama Coalition for Fathers and Children
Birmingham, AL

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