April 20, 2013

The arguments made in the April 16 editorial “Whose child is this?” were refuted by the collective findings of three courts, including the South Carolina Supreme Court, that ruled in favor of the rights of Dusten Brown, a member of the Cherokee Nation and an Iraq war veteran, to raise his now 3½-year-old daughter, Veronica. This case is about a dedicated father’s deep desire to raise his daughter, who was never legally adopted by the adoptive couple, the Capobiancos.

Beneath the surface, where The Post chose not to venture, is an all-too-familiar story about adoption lawyers who not only attempt to circumvent federal and state laws protecting Native American children and families but also seek to take advantage of new fathers actively deployed in the U.S. military. Both apply in this situation, and the South Carolina courts thwarted these efforts, holding true to the Indian Child Welfare Act and returning the child to her father, where she is now thriving.

John Nichols, Columbia, S.C.

The writer is a lawyer representing Dusten Brown in the Supreme Court case Adoptive Couple v. Baby Girl.