California's Multiple-Parent Bill Advances


CitizenLink with an update:

The California General Assembly approved a bill Monday that would authorize the courts to decide whether it’s in a child’s best interest to have more than two legal parents.

Senate Bill 1476 was introduced by state Sen. Mark Leno, who regularly introduces legislation from a gay-activist perspective, in February. This bill appears to be aimed at deconstructing what it means to be a “family.”

... S.B. 1476 passed the General Assembly on a 50-19 vote. It now heads back to the Senate for final passage.


  1. Ash
    Posted August 30, 2012 at 9:16 am | Permalink

    SSMers argue that same-sex couples are raising children and that marriage would benefit those children. So what happens when children have more than two parents?

  2. Jon
    Posted August 30, 2012 at 10:34 am | Permalink

    This isn't just about SSM at all. The bill is not "deconstructing what it means to be a family", it is actually trying to make the law more compatible with reality, in which kids do not always have married parents, but often have divorced parents, many of whom remarry. If kids have 3 parents, should those 3 parents not be recognized by the law? Does a step-parent who plays more of a parental role in a child's life not deserve equal recognition as a biological parent?

  3. Publius
    Posted August 30, 2012 at 10:51 am | Permalink

    How about a coach who plays a bigger role in a child's life than a parent?

    Or the live-in boyfriend of the single mom?

    Or, since we want to be compatible with reality, how about the polygamous family?

    Once we start deconstructing the traditional and natural family, is there any place to draw a bright line?

  4. Jon
    Posted August 30, 2012 at 11:03 am | Permalink

    A coach does not take on a parental role, unless the child happens to live in the coach's house and be raised by the coach, at which point the coach stops being a coach and becomes a parent. A live-in boyfriend would be at the discretion of the court, and most likely not considered a parent, unless that live-in boyfriend had been living there and raising the child as his own for multiple years. If there is a polygamous family, again it would be at the discretion of the court, and since polygamy is against the law, I'm not sure what the court would do (arrest the parents?)

    Now that I've answered your hypothetical questions, how about you answer mine? You have a family in which the biological father leaves the mother, the mother remarries and the child is raised by his/her biological mother and step-father, only seeing his/her biological father every other weekend and some holidays. Should the step-father who has raised the child as his own legally be a 3rd parent?

    As far as drawing a line goes, it's the discretion of the judge to determine whether or not someone has raised a child as his/her own child and qualifies as a parent.

  5. Randy E King
    Posted August 30, 2012 at 11:15 am | Permalink


    Basing family structures on the exceptions to the rule using a floating scale is surest way to institutionalized tyranny.

    Do you happen to be Canadian Jon?

  6. Barb Chamberlan
    Posted August 30, 2012 at 11:22 am | Permalink

    The point of this bill is to make it easier for 3rd parties (and courts) to usurp the rights of a child's rightful parent(s).

    This only makes sense from a gay extremist point of view, since any child in the possession of a same-sex couple has been stolen from his rightful parent(s).

  7. Debbie
    Posted August 30, 2012 at 11:24 am | Permalink

    The government can't seem to enforce involvement, or at least financial support, from 2 biological or legal parents. This will further clog up our courts and our blogs. If someone wants legally parent a child, there are avenues of adoption. Of course, the legal parent must be willing to give up his/her rights in order for that to take place. If he/she wants to, fine. If not, he/she has to step up to the plate and at least provide financial support. This is just more government involvement, and we see the problems that causes. Why do people continue to ask the government to define their responsibilities for them?

  8. Jon
    Posted August 30, 2012 at 11:35 am | Permalink

    Not exactly sure what you're talking about. Given the vast number of divorces in this country, the hypothetical situations I'm giving aren't really hypothetical, and they aren't exceptions to the rule. How does legally recognizing a parent promote tyranny? And no, I'm not Canadian. I'm American. If I were Canadian, I probably wouldn't bother debating you folks on this blog.

    You seem to believe that all biological parents are great parents, and are always there for their children and are interested in raising their children. This is demonstrably false. The bill makes sense from any practical point of view that recognizes the fact that there are many cases in which biological parents have chosen to make a minimal role in parenting, and others (read: step parents) are equally legitimate parents.

    It's not just about defining responsibilities, it's also about defining legal guardianship. In the situation where a step-father has really been parenting a child for many years, does it make not sense to be able to consider this step-father as a 3rd legal guardian, rather than forcing the biological father (who may still play a role in the child's parenting, albeit a smaller one than the step-fathers) to give up his rights?

  9. Randy E King
    Posted August 30, 2012 at 11:44 am | Permalink


    The actual divorce rate in this country is about 30%; the divorce rate of married with children is less. You have proposed a floating scale as the basis of what constitutes a parent and you left the final decision up to an appointed attorney in a black robe.

    You can’t get much more tyrannical than that; separating what constitutes a parent from the laws of nature and directing that our rights now come from government.

    I for one will not be subjugated to your secular religion.

  10. Publius
    Posted August 30, 2012 at 11:45 am | Permalink

    The point is that the courts will now be the arbiter of what constitutes a "parental role," whatever Jon or another Judge Walker might define or expand that to be.

    The law should not recognize non-biological, non-adoptive persons as parents. If the live-in boyfriend or partner doesn't adopt the child, he is not a legally a parent no matter how long he hangs around.

    Traditionally, children belonged to their biological parents and no other parents were assigned by the state except in cases strictly governed by due process of law, e.g. adoption in the case of abandonment or fostering in the case of abuse.

    This is in reality a move to make all children in principle wards of the state and is thus an attack on the rights of the natural family that lays the foundations of state tyranny.

  11. Barb Chamberlan
    Posted August 30, 2012 at 11:59 am | Permalink

    All one need do is consider the source of this bill. In 2005, Leno authored AB 849, the bill that legalized psuedo marriage. In 2007, he introduced AB 43, the deceptively named Religious Freedom and Civil Marriage Protection Act, that would have allowed for same-sex marriage.

    He has a history of introducing bills with deceptive names that force radical social changes on the people.

    It's clear that his newest creation (SB 1476) is designed to make it easier for same-sex couples to steal children from their rightful parent(s).

    He follows in the footsteps of other gay extremists who view children as nothing more than commodities to be bought, sold and stolen.

  12. Publius
    Posted August 30, 2012 at 12:14 pm | Permalink

    A non-adoptive, non-biologically connected person is not legally a parent. Nor should the courts make him or her one. Children, except by due process of law, are not wards of the state. To go in that direction is tyranny.

  13. Posted August 30, 2012 at 1:00 pm | Permalink

    "To go in that direction is tyranny."

    >> Which is exactly what we are dealing with in the strategy, tactics, and aims of the extremist gender left.

  14. Barb Chamberlan
    Posted August 30, 2012 at 1:51 pm | Permalink

    Related story from Canada. They already recognize multiple "parents."

  15. David Argue
    Posted August 30, 2012 at 1:53 pm | Permalink

    When my wife and I adopted an infant, the birth mother and father both relinquished their parental rights and my wife and I became the legal parents. Now imagine if they still had their parental rights, and decided a) They wanted full custody after x number of years b) They wanted the child to come live with them c) They didn't like the way we were raising 'their' child. Having more than 2 people involved in the legal parenting process creates nothing more than legal nightmares and harm to the children who have to be put through the judicial meat grinder in order for a judge to decide what's best for them. You think divorce is hard on kids with two parents? Wait until you have 4 or 5 people squabbling over them.

    To answer your question Jon. The stepfather should legally adopt the child, thus severing the legal parental relationship with the biological father. Biologically he is still the father, legally he isn't

  16. Chris Fox
    Posted August 30, 2012 at 2:06 pm | Permalink

    Another attempt by gay predators to have access to children. Hijacking black civil rights or hiding behind step parenting to gain legal access to children. The community is a community of sexual predators doing their best to brainwash society with homophobic propaganda. Frank Lombard and gay icon Larry Brinkin if not caught would be joyful of these measures.

  17. Zack
    Posted August 30, 2012 at 2:09 pm | Permalink

    Only in California. ONLY in this God forsaken state!

  18. Ash
    Posted August 30, 2012 at 2:13 pm | Permalink

    The marriage supporters here are doing a great job explaining the flaws of defacto parenthood. I would like to add that if a step-parent wants to become a legal parent, there is something called step-parent adoption which is easier to perform than a regular adoption, but requires (as it should) the consent of the biological parents of the child. A step-parent should not be considered as equal to a biological parent if they haven't gone through this procedure.

    I would also note that a court in California said that defacto parenthood can be granted to not only those who live with a child for a few years, but even unrelated people who have never lived with the child and don't even know the child's other parent!

  19. Jackie
    Posted August 30, 2012 at 2:24 pm | Permalink

    As an adult looking back, I am so grateful there wasn't a law like this when I had a step dad. He was a control freak who would have used this law and my mother was a push over who would have let him. That would have been a nightmare for me. I think the parents I was born with although greatly flawed were the best.

  20. Mark Jordan
    Posted August 30, 2012 at 2:45 pm | Permalink

    Dear Jesus please come back soon and end this mess. My God have mercy on us..........

  21. Ash
    Posted August 30, 2012 at 4:13 pm | Permalink

    Although the discussion has veered off into step-parentage, it is helpful to note that the proposed law was inspired by a case involving a woman who had a baby/sexual affair with a man while married to, but briefly separated from, another woman. All three (the two women and the man) are in court fighting over the child, and so this politician would like to make it possible for a child to have more than three parents.

    As Barb said, this is about making it easier for a same-sex partner to barge in on the parental statuses of natural mother and father.

    In an opposite sexed marriage, the presumption makes the husband the legal father over a man who cuckolded him (see Michael H. v. Gerald D. which originated in California). But this would be ridiculous for even a married same-sex female couple, obviously; hence the 3 parents legislation.

  22. Robert
    Posted August 30, 2012 at 4:53 pm | Permalink

    You have to be far away from God to not know what is true in your heart. The gay activists are making up many lies about what marriage really is. We all know what marriage is, but many people are blind and deaf they cannot see or hear God anymore they have toned Him out, and made up a fantasy world where they believe their own lies and others follow, they deceive themselves.

  23. Posted August 30, 2012 at 4:53 pm | Permalink

    Oh, the rich vastness of possibilities, the glorious vista of laws, rules, codes, guidelines, directives.........

    No wonder the lawyers are so enthusiastic in their advocacy of SSM.

    It's a jobs program.

  24. David Malbuff
    Posted August 31, 2012 at 12:31 pm | Permalink

    Jon, you simply can't be as obtuse as you make yourself out to be.

    Legal adoption is the recourse for a step-parent who is helping to raise a child. It always has been. None of your "arguments" change this fact.

    No judge is qualified to award parenthood to anyone. This is an attempt to enforce parenthood claims by those who have no relation to the child.

    Look at Leno's track record. His ultimate goal is for all children, and all people, to be wards of the state.
    Those who believe SSM is merely a fairness issue for gay couples are useful idiots exploited for this radical agenda.

  25. Daughter of Eve
    Posted August 31, 2012 at 2:30 pm | Permalink

    This is yet another example of the law of unintended consequences: when divorce is cheap and easy, when cohabitation is socially acceptable, when marriage is seen as adult centered, rather than child centered, when common law relationships pass for marriage, when Hollywood glorifies promiscuity, when political correctness trumps common sense, when up is down and black is white, you end up with these kinds of scenarios, where children become a ward of the state, subject to assignment by judge. Third party parenting, like SS"M" is the ambulance at the bottom of the hill, instead of protecting and reinforcing marriage between and a man and a woman, and the responsible procreation that accompanies it, which is the fence at the top of the hill. Liberal thinking will take you right over a fiscal and moral cliff.

  26. James Meyer
    Posted September 3, 2012 at 10:12 am | Permalink

    Two. Two! Two is the magic number! It doesn't matter what sex your spouse is, as long as there's two of you. It doesn't matter who your "parents" are, as long as you have two. Children gain no benefit from aunts, uncles, or grandparents-only two. Polygyny has never been practiced, by divine temporary command or otherwise-it's two that counts. Two two two!

    I hope my sarcasm was obvious.

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