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A Chicago Judge strips a mother of custody of her son until she gets a COVID-19 vaccine shot, leaving many questioning her authority.

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When you go to court, it can go easy or things can be very bad, but then, you have cases of things going sideways. In most instances, going bad ends with jail, but every so often, it can be something unexpected that no one saw coming. When you take into consideration the COVID-19 pandemic, everyone is on edge, even Judges. The misinformation has us down bad and everyone’s sick of it, which is why a Chicago judge took things to the extreme according to the Chicago Sun-Times.

In what many say is the first ruling of its kind, a divorced Pilsen mother has had her child visitation revoked by a Cook County judge because she is not vaccinated against COVID-19. On Aug. 10, Cook County Judge James Shapiro barred Rebecca Firlit, the mother of an 11-year-old boy, from seeing her son.

Firlit’s attorney, Annette Fernholz, said her client and the ex-husband have been divorced for seven years and sharing custody. Fernholz said the issue was not raised by her ex-husband.

Rather, the judge asked Firlit if she was vaccinated during a child support hearing via Zoom, and when she said no, the judge stripped her of all parenting time with her son until she gets vaccinated.

“I’ve had adverse reactions to vaccines in the past and was advised not to get vaccinated by my doctor. It poses a risk,” Firlit told the Chicago Sun-Times.

A 39-year-old desk clerk from Pilsen, Firlit said she was caught off guard by the judge and was shocked at his ruling.

“One of the first things he asked me when I got on the Zoom call was whether or not I was vaccinated, which threw me off because I asked him what it had to do with the hearing,” Firlit said.
“I was confused because it was just supposed to be about expenses and child support. I asked him what it had to do with the hearing, and he said, ‘I am the judge, and I make the decisions for your case.’”

Perhaps someone with a little more street smarts would have seen this coming and said they would do anything to keep their child safe. This may be outlandish to many but at this point with the Delta variant raging, sometimes extreme measures are needed.

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