SAF Sues On Behalf Of Foster Parents In Michigan

While posting will be sporadic this week as I’m on vacation with my family, I did come across this from the Second Amendment Foundation. They are suing the state of Michigan because of their policies regarding firearms and foster or adoptive parents.

From SAF:

The Second Amendment Foundation today filed a federal lawsuit against the head of the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) on behalf of four Michigan residents, alleging civil rights violations under color of law for enforcing restrictions on the Second Amendment rights of people who want to be foster or adoptive parents.

SAF is joined in the lawsuit by William and Jill Johnson and Brian and Naomi Mason. The lawsuit, filed in U.S. District Court for the Western District of Michigan, alleges that MDHHS caseworkers told Mr. Johnson, a 100-percent disabled Marine Corps veteran who sought custody of his grandson that he would have to give the agency the serial numbers of all of his firearms. When he questioned this, the caseworkers allegedly told him, “If you want to care for your grandson you will have to give up some of your constitutional rights.” This was after the state asked the Johnsons to be foster parents to their grandson.

Two weeks later, the lawsuit alleges, a Gogebic County Court judge told the Johnsons that if they wanted their grandson placed in their care, “We know we are violating numerous constitutional rights here, but if you do not comply, we will remove the boy from your home.”

“The statements from the caseworker and judge are simply outrageous,” said SAF founder and Executive Vice President Alan M. Gottlieb. “This amounts to coercion, with a child as their bartering chip. I cannot recall ever hearing anything so offensive and egregious, and we’ve handled cases like this in the past. Blatantly telling someone they must give up their civil rights in order to care for their own grandchild is simply beyond the pale.”

The lawsuit asserts that “the policy of the MDHHS, by implementing requirements and restrictions that are actually functional bans on the bearing of firearms for self-defense, both in and out of the home, completely prohibits foster and adoptive parents, and those who would be foster or adoptive parents, from the possession and bearing of readily-available firearms for the purpose of self-defense. This violates Plaintiffs’ constitutional rights under the Second and Fourteenth Amendments.”

The Johnsons and Masons reside in Ontanogan, a small community on the north shore of the Upper Peninsula, on Lake Superior. Mr. Mason has been the Pastor at the Ontonagon Baptist Church in Ontonagon for nine years. He is also the Chair of the Ontonagon County Department of Health and Human Services Board.

“This is a case we simply must pursue,” Gottlieb said. “State agencies and the people who work in those agencies simply cannot be allowed to disregard someone’s civil rights.”


3 thoughts on “SAF Sues On Behalf Of Foster Parents In Michigan”

  1. How do you impeach the Gogebic County Court judge, especially if those statements were made in court? Can his bar license be revoked for saying something that stupid?

  2. They need to pursue criminal action against individuals.

    TITLE 18, U.S.C., SECTION 242

    Whoever, under color of any law, statute, ordinance, regulation, or custom, willfully subjects any person in any State, Territory, Commonwealth, Possession, or District to the deprivation of any rights, privileges, or immunities secured or protected by the Constitution or laws of the United States, … shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than one year, or both; and if bodily injury results from the acts committed in violation of this section or if such acts include the use, attempted use, or threatened use of a dangerous weapon, explosives, or fire, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than ten years, or both; and if death results from the acts committed in violation of this section or if such acts include kidnaping or an attempt to kidnap, aggravated sexual abuse, or an attempt to commit aggravated sexual abuse, or an attempt to kill, shall be fined under this title, or imprisoned for any term of years or for life, or both, or may be sentenced to death.

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