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'Nazi' parents denied move to regain child custody

Ensuring that a child is safe, protected and in a healthy environment is of utmost importance in determining appropriate child custody arrangements. Two parents who describe themselves as Nazis, and who named one of their children "Adolf Hitler" found a judge unsympathetic to their attempt to regain custody of their children.

The four children were taken out of their care in 2009, after headlines nationwide and in New Orleans focused on the name they had given their then 3-year-old son. A store in their community brought the issue to light when it flatly refused to decorate a birthday cake with the child's name.

Children have a basic right to be in a healthy environment. Courts can intervene to remove a child from the home when there are indications that something there threatens the child's welfare or safety. In reaching this determination, a court may take the lifestyle, values, and education being promoted in the home into account.

The highly offensive name given to the child in this case clearly brought the ability of the parents to provide a healthy and safe environment for the children into question. They apparently were not willing to give up a dangerous lifestyle for the sake of the children, instead trying to use them to promote an extremist ideology.

It turned out that three out of four of the children the couple had were named after Nazi persons or concepts. The father objected to the court's decision removing the children, saying that it was unfair to base it simply on the children's names. He asserted that the children were in no way abused, and that he and his wife were competent to be parents.

The father, who reportedly separated from his wife, recently said that he would be willing to abandon his adherence to Nazism if it would help him regain custody of his children.

Source: Yahoo! News, "Judge orders 'Adolf Hitler' to be kept in child custody," Eric Pfeiffer, June 1, 2012

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