Bovee v. Broom, No. 12-1582 (7th Cir. 2013)Annotate this Case
Bovee contends that his sister, Broom, violated the due process clause when, in her role as guidance counselor at his children’s school, she criticized his parenting methods and called him a “bad father.” Bovee claims that this alienated his children’s affections, violating his fundamental liberty interest in familial relations. The district court dismissed for lack of subject matter jurisdiction. The Seventh Circuit held that the dismissal should have been on the merits. “The suit is about words, and only words.” Bovee’s lawyer conceded that Broom has not taken any official act adverse to his interests. Defamation, words not accompanied by any other official action, does not violate the due process clause.