"Not that I don't love them...I do...I think they are adorable. They're his kids...they're his kids. They're not my kids" -- Debbie Rowe, Michael Jackson's ex-wife and mother of his two older children.
Music fans around the world are mourning the passing of Michael Jackson, devastated at the passing of an icon. While losing an icon is tragic, the real real tragedy could be what happens to the King of Pop's children.
Debbie Rowe is the parent of Prince Joseph Michael and Paris Katherine, Michael Jackson's two oldest children. They were divorced in 1999, and in 2005, during a custody battle, Rowe attempted to give up her parental rights. Judge Stephen Lacks, who presided over the California based hearing, initially ruled she could terminate her rights, but he soon reversed that decision. This was based on a technicality under California law, where before a parent's rights are terminated, the Department of Children and Family Services must conduct a parental fitness investigation. Rowe never participated ....and relinquinshed her rights. With the passing of Michael, Debbie Rowe is now in the position under California law to get custody of Paris and Prince, despite being quoted as saying " my kids don't call me mom because I don't want them to." It's a shame to think that someone who has consistently said she doesn't want to be a parent, could quite possibly gain custody of two kids. The only way under California law for Rowe to be denied custody would be for the court to determine it would be "detrimental to the children."
Meanwhile, according to sources Michael Jackson's mother, who was awarded temporary custody by a California judge.Michael Jackson may have passed away but this acrimonious legal battle has the potential to live on. If Rowe retains custody of Paris and Prince Michael, she would be in line to receive big bucks via Michael's estate. Ultimately, the real test for who will become the children's legal guardians will be in the "best interest of the children." Despite Rowe being their biological mother, it is disturbing that there is even the mere suggestion that she may be granted custody after comments renouncing them as her children.
To my mind, this "mother" gave up her rights long ago. And, to quote the King of Pop himself, this is a "black and white" situation.
Lis Wiehl currently serves as a legal analyst for FOX News Channel (FNC). She joined the network in October 2001.