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1 Child & Fam. L.J. 5 (2013)

handle is hein.journals/cflj1 and id is 1 raw text is: 













   DEFINING PARENTHOOD: EVOLUTION OR
                   PENDULUM SWING?



                     BY:  RUFINA D. BEEM*



     At the heart of liberty is the right to define one's own concept of
     existence, of meaning, of the universe, and of the mystery of
     human  life. Justice O'Connor'

                         INTRODUCTION
     There are some things in life that everyone should have the freedom
to do. Everyone should be able to create a family, experience the joy of
being a parent, and raise children in a manner  based upon  personal
choices and  preferences.  Indeed, this right of a  parent has been
recognized as fundamental.2 The Fourteenth Amendment's  Due  Process
Clause has a substantive component that provides heightened protection
against government  interference with certain fundamental rights and
liberty interests.3 The liberty interest included in this component is a
parent's fundamental  right to make  decisions concerning the care,
custody, and control of their children.4 It has been soundly determined
by the  U.S. Supreme  Court that the Constitution protects a parent's
rights.' What  the Constitution does not do, however, is define what
constitutes a parent.



Rufina D. Beem, Esq. graduated from Pace Law School, J.D., cum laude, in May 2012.
She was admitted to the New York State Bar in February 2013 and is currently an
Associate in the Matrimonial and Family Law Department at Miller, Zeiderman &
Wiederkehr, LLP in White Plains, New York.
I Planned Parenthood of Southeastern Pennsylvania v. Casey, 505 U.S. 833, 851 (1992).
2 Id. at 926-27.
Troxel v. Granville, 530 U.S. 57, 65 (2000) (quoting Washington v. Glucksberg, 521
U.S. 702, 720 (1997).
4 Id.
s Id.


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