Levi Rickert, editor-in-chief in Native Condition. Discussion »
In an article about the Oklahoma State Supreme Court issuing an emergency stay to the immediate transfer of Veronica Brown, on Tuesday The New York Times reported "the governors in Oklahoma and South Carolina have spoken on the phone about it and are pushing for a resolution outside of the court."
Wow did The New York Times have that one wrong!
By Tuesday afternoon, South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley showed how serious she was on that matter when an Amicus Curiate Brief on her behalf was issued and filed in the Oklahoma State Supreme Court.
Part of the Amicus Brief reads:
"South Carolina also has a compelling interest in ensuring the prompt return of a South Carolina child to her adoptive parents and ensuring Mr. Brown is held responsible for criminally hold Veronica Rose Capobianco from her parents for nearly a month."
It doesn't sound as if the South Carolina governor was serious about having the case resolved outside the court.
Then yesterday, I got home just find out that Oklahoma Governor Mary Fallin had signed the extradition order just before 5:00 pm central time, that sets in motion Dusten Brown being taken into custody and sent to South Carolina to face a "custodial interference" charge there.
It doesn't sound as if the Oklahoma governor was serious about having the case resolved outside the court.
Cherokee Nation citizen Dusten Brown is a gallant warrior for both his people and his country, willing to make the ultimate sacrifice for either. But he never expected that the sacrifice he would be asked to make would be to give up his daughter, Veronica.
Indian country is proud of the relentless fight this young American Indian father has made in numerous court systems in two states and in the nation's capital at the United States Supreme Court to keep his daughter.
What is appalling is two modern-day governors in two different states would side with the non-Native adoptive couple's trafficking of an American Indian child.
These two governors are heartless in their approach to the facts of the case. They are conducting themselves as if it still were the wild, wild West days when you rounded up Indians at your own pleasure.
Last week, three US presidents celebrated the 50th anniversary of the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King's historic and compelling "I Have a Dream" speech on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial. While it is proper to remember Dr. King's yet to be realized speech, the two heartless governors who purport to be keepers of the law in this case should read Dr. King's "Letter from Birmingham Jail."
In it Dr. King breaks it down for us in the following excerpt:
“We can never forget that everything Hitler did in Germany was "legal" and everything the Hungarian freedom fighters did in Hungary was "illegal. " It was "illegal" to aid and comfort a Jew in Hitler's Germany. But I am sure that if I had lived in Germany during that time, I would have aided and comforted my Jewish brothers even though it was illegal. If I lived in a Communist country today where certain principles dear to the Christian faith are suppressed, I believe I would openly advocate disobeying these anti-religious laws.”
Dr. King is really proclaiming there are moral laws that should supersede human-made laws that are bent to appease a certain constituency.
This is clearly the case in the distorted lawsuit that came to be known as the "Adoptive Couple v. Baby Girl."
Baby Girl is Veronica Brown, who turns four years old on September 15, and a citizen of the Cherokee Nation of Oklahoma. She was recently evaluated by a professional, who maintains Veronica is "thriving" in her current environment with her biological father, Dusten Brown and his wife, Robin. The professional is concerned that severe damage will be done to Veronica if she is taken and sent almost 1,200 miles away to South Carolina.
Had the Nightlight Christian Adoptions, the adoption agency that handled Veronica's adoption, and her biological mother who did not and does not want Veronica been honest and ethical about Veronica's American Indian heritage, the Cherokee Nation would have never allowed for her to be transferred to the South Carolina couple in the first place.
Justice in this bitter custody battle is not being served by these two heartless governors.
updated 1:16 pm edt; posted September 5, 2013 12:30 pm edt