Comments from the front line. In response to several supportive comments from our readers on "the best interest of the child"
The modern concept of "the best interest of the child" has its roots in Colonial America and England. The foundations that were laid out back then dealt with many of the same issues confronting todays parents and court system. This would include Rights to custody and visitation and developed indirectly rather than through legal contests.
Although "the best interest of the child" is the gold standard with over 200 years of history behind it the concept is open for abuse. The Nazi party was probably the first to execute the concept of what the state considered was in the best interest of the child. It is true they were not the first to come up with the term. They were the first state organization though to implement the idea of what is in "the best interest of the child" and apply it on a mass scale.
The term itself is one that is abstract and applied as fact in the court room setting by GALs. It is meaningless and is often used as a shield by GALs and Child protective services. In the end who really can determine what is in the best interest of the child? A state sponsored organization that tries to apply a formula to what is deemed in the best interest? Or the child's parents and family?