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Fathers spend time at the Sheriff's office #OnBeaversWatch

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Happy Fathers Day to all dads. Especially those fathers separated from their children on Judge Tonny Beavers' and Judge Ken Vinson's watch. #YouAreNotAlone

Sitting at the Sheriff's office on Friday 6/19, waiting my turn to request a report to be filed, one father after the other arrived to request help or file a report. These are the fathers that refuse to be broken and removed from their children's lives. None of us were in arrears for child support. All of us claim no history of violent behaviors as is so often allowed to be falsely portrayed with allegations being substituted for evidence. Not knowing these fathers personally, they offered no reason to doubt their experiences were not similar to mine.


My daughter lives less than 10 minutes away and I have not spent any time with her in 1,058 days, #OnBeaversWatch. In that time, I have had brief glimpses of her on 3 or 4 occasions. I have always been an involved dad. We never had a bad relationship and I coached her teams in PCPRD fastpitch for 5 years with 4 of those years served on the Paulding County Softball Advisory Committee with Sheriff Gary Gulledge. We are only acquaintances but never once in six years did he or Tommy Dooley say I shouldn't be around children. I coached girls from 6-16 years old during that time, so I'm pretty sure something would have been said if it was needed.


My youngest daughter's closest adult sisters (19 and 23) by the same mom live with me, but they can't see their baby sister either. Having provided support and financial stability for their mother during her years of government assistance and financial despair, I am now nearly bankrupt because I make sure the child support is paid. So our adult children, that live with me, aren't influenced by money that I don't have. They seek and receive no reward or praise for doing the right thing other than knowing they have integrity. My daughters would have access to their baby sister and the rewards would be great if they would abandon their dignity yet they side with the truth. A close examination of our family dynamics would reveal so many more truths. But is Chief Judge #TonnySBeavers really interested in the "best interests of children"? Or the truth?


What does it mean, #OnBeaversWatch, when my daughter is isolated from her family and the "approved" circle of her friends that know her father continues to shrink. The circle of friends a 16 year old is allowed to spend time with unsupervised by her mother continues to shrink?


What does it mean when even the dog at my daughter's mom's house is on anti-anxiety medication? A child may be pressured to conceal her authentic self but a dog can be nothing but authentic. As Cesar Millan, "The Dog Whisperer", frequently points out, how a dog behaves is largely a reflection of the owner.

As my daughter turns 16 years old in 2 weeks, I really don't have a dog in this fight anymore. Even if my daughter were to seek emancipation, I have no reason to doubt it would be stalled in Judge #Beavers' court until she turned 18. Assuming Judge Beavers didn't recuse himself when we revisited the reasons why he should, which may include improper ex parte communication.


So why would I take personal risk in speaking out about perceived injustice on Judge #TonnyBeavers watch? Because children and their parents, moms and dads, should not be subjected to a broken family court system. For the sake of our children and grandchildren, the time to fix it is now.


In a society that scolds fathers, especially black fathers, for not being involved in their children's lives, what role do judges play in the creation of absent fathers? Why do mothers and fathers have to spend tens of thousands of dollars in court just to be in their kids lives? Is family law a racket? Are Paulding County courts #pay2play or #cash4conflict? Is it the responsibility of the courts to make business for themselves when they are charged with protecting our children? Should lawyers be encouraged to earn money off the backs of children? It's easy to blame both parents but you only need one parent to get two lawyers paid. It is my opinion through observation and experience, often only one parent is required to follow the Court's orders #OnBeaversWatch, not both. Is that a byproduct of confirmation bias? Does that encourage abuse and ensure conflict if a custodial parent is bitter?


Judge #TonnyBeavers and Judge #KenVinson are public figures so I don't think I'm breaking PCom rules. Their public service or failures of public service is and should be open to public scrutiny. Only a well-informed electorate can heal the body politic. Even if the only solution is to recall judges elected unopposed. I for one think Judge Bucci should be Chief Judge to lead us away from the practices of the old guard. Or he should at least be a part of the changing of the guard before he succumbs to the status quo.




Gil Freeman


“The one great principle of the English law is, to make business for itself. There is no other principle distinctly, certainly, and consistently maintained through all its narrow turnings. Viewed by this light it becomes a coherent scheme, and not the monstrous maze the laity are apt to think it. Let them but once clearly perceive that its grand principle is to make business for itself at their expense, and surely they will cease to grumble.”

― Charles Dickens, Bleak House


Edited by Domestic Violence by Proxy
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