1482 Hearing Postponed in
Face of Massive Opposition
|April 25, 2006
1482 Update :
In the face of over 3,500 calls,
letters and faxes opposing SB
1482, the hearing on the bill
has been postponed from today
to Tuesday, May 9. Thanks to all
of your for your participation.
The stated reason for the postponement
is that the committee is working
on fiscal matters right now, and
SB 1482 isn't fiscal. It is possible
that this is what happened. However,
as I noted in last week's action
alert, the bill's backers made
a sweeping, last minute amendment
to the bill in order to slip it
through before opponents had a
chance to organize. Now that there
is great opposition, it is also
possible that the bill's author
realizes that this won't be easy
and is delaying in order to marshal
her forces. It is also possible
that she is backing away from
the bill, or is going to amend
it to make it less objectionable.
We will keep you informed. To
donate to help our campaign, click
As I noted in my action alert
NEW CAMPAIGN: Move-Away Bill Will
Harm Children of Divorce (April
SB 1482...a parent seeking
to block a move is
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prohibited from citing most of the evidence
that could provide a basis for restraining
the move. Nonmoving parents are prevented
from citing the move's impact on their
children's relationships with them or
the effects of the children losing their
schools and friends. This directly abrogates
current California case law which says
that the children's relationship with
their nonmoving parent must be considered
when deciding a relocation case.
1482 is an attempt by the extremist
Coalition for Family Equity and misguided
feminists to reverse the progress made
on behalf of California's children of
divorce over the past two years. From
1996 to 2004 move-away determinations
were based on the Burgess decision,
which was interpreted by California
courts as conferring unlimited move-away
privileges. Under Burgess the
bonds between tens of thousands of children
and their noncustodial parents were
California Supreme Court addressed the
problem in the
LaMusga decision in April,
2004 by making it clear that courts
can prevent children from being moved
when it is detrimental to their interests.
Among the factors deemed important were
the relationship between the child and
the nonmoving parent.
the summer of 2004 then Senate President
John Burton, one of the most powerful
people in California, introduced SB
730, a bill which would have granted
custodial parents an almost unlimited
right to move children far way from
their noncustodial parents.
"We organized opposition to SB
730, and thousands of you wrote and
called Sacramento to oppose the bill.
Our campaign gained
widespread media attention and was
endorsed by numerous mental health and
professionals. Burton surprised
Sacramento insiders by
withdrawing the bill a few weeks
family law has a huge influence on other
states, and parents all over the United
States have a large stake in what happens
here. I hear every day from devastated
parents who lost their children in the
aftermath of the misguided Burgess
decision. I often hear from parents
whose relationships with their children
were saved by the LaMusga decision.
Alliance for Children Concerned About
Move-Aways, which we originally
formed to defeat SB 730, is working
California Alliance for Families and
Children to defeat
The American Coalition for Fathers and
The American Coalition for Fathers and
Children is dedicated to creating a
family law system which promotes equal
rights for all parties affected by divorce.
Contact the ACFC at 1-800-978-3237 or
visit them on the web at
New York Shared Parenting Bill Held
In a disappointing though not surprising
vote, the New York Assembly Committee
on Children & Families voted today
to hold over
A330, the New York Shared Parenting
Bill. Four committee members voted in
favor of the bill (see below), and the
rest voted to hold, citing concerns
about alleged technical issues or flaws
in the bill.
This bill has been locked up in committee
for 12 years. Jim Hays, president of
Coalition of Fathers and Families New
York, who sponsored the bill, told
me that with the four "yes"
votes and all the media attention, this
is the closest they've ever come to
getting it out of committee. He has
asked me to tell you that it was the
8,000 calls, letters and faxes you generated
which helped bring it this close, and
to thank you.
These events show just how entrenched
the interests we oppose are. After we
launched the campaign in support of
A330, the National Organization for
Women and Stop Family Violence counterattacked,
both launching action alerts and campaigns
against the bill. Yet our numbers dwarfed
It's very hard to get publicity for
bills that have not yet passed out of
committee, yet a pitched battle over
this bill was fought in the pages of
the Albany Times Union, the
liberal, pro-feminist newspaper in New
York's capital. This included: a mismatched
debate over the bill on the op-ed page
Family law proposes to keep bonds strong
by Mike McCormick and I and Joint custody
bill not in child's interest by NOW's
Marcia Pappas, 3/28/06); a surprising
endorsement of shared parenting by the
Times Union in their editorial
Custody challenges: It's time New York
embraced the concept of shared parenting
(4/11/06); two news articles; and a
score of letters to the editor, including
one from Pappas whining that the Times
Union had dared to stop following
the NOW party line on this issue.
The Times Union was fair and
allowed both sides to be heard, which
is all I ever ask a newspaper to do.
The battle quickly became very lopsided,
with the feminists reduced to babbling
"domestic violence, domestic violence"
over and over again in trying to scare
legislators away from voting for A330.
The Assemblymemebers voting in favor
of the bill were Ruben Diaz Jr., Karim
Camara, Michael Benjamin and Vincent
Ignizio. I suggest you send them an
email thanking them for their support
Hays says the
Coalition of Fathers and Families New
York will bring the bill back next
Canadian Father on Hunger Strike
Canadian father Gerry Nicolas is now
on his 9th day of hunger strike in front
of the Quebec Provincial Court of Justice
in Gatineau. Nicolas has a six year-old
boy and a four year-old girl. He only
gets every other weekend "visitation,"
and says his ex-wife often interferes
or eliminates even that. He says that
at one point he went three months without
seeing his children because of her interference.
The police (of course) refuse to enforce
Nicolas also says his children are being
alienated from him. Nicolas is
black, his ex-wife is Asian, and Nicolas
claims his four year-old daughter told
him her mother told her not to kiss
him "because he's black."
Nicolas says he and his ex-wife both
earn around $60 or $65 thousand dollars
a year, but that he has lost his business
and his savings and after his wages
are garnisheed he is left with less
than $300 a month to live on. He says
he has been unable to get a court to
resolve these issues, and is on hunger
strike to try to force the court to
give him a hearing.
I called Gerry yesterday, and he seems
very sincere and determined. I'm not
sure that a hunger strike is the best
tactic--I prefer the bridge and rooftop
Fathers 4 Justice--but I support
him in what he's doing. To contact Gerry
and give him encouragement, call him
on his cell phone at (819) 921-1877.
His email, which his sister is retrieving
and printing out for him, is
"Convicted Felons Had More Rights
than My Dad' Says Woman Who Supports
A woman who joined our campaign in support
New York Shared Parenting Bill,
wrote the following letter to the New
York Assembly Committee on Children
& Families: "I'm the mother
of 3 boys as well as stepmother to 3
more children. When I was 9, my parents
divorced. The man I so admired,
my dad, was treated so low class that
he was unable to have any say at all
about his children. Convicted
felons had more rights and control over
their lives than my dad was afforded
when it came to his children.
"My dad was a very active parent
before the divorce. So active,
that I completely credit him for giving
me the tools I needed to make me a good
person and the tools to raise my own
children. I actively saw my mother
literally play act the victim.
I guess she thought we wouldn't remember
what she did to actively hurt him any
way that she could.
she could, thanks to the state and their
lack of a system that would at least
allow my dad to have say over the children
he helped bring into the world.
When I separated from my 1st husband,
we agreed, without court involvement,
how to finish raising our children...We
also forced ourselves to maintain an
open door policy. If my sons wanted
to be with their father...they called
him and vice versa...
up with divorced parents back in the
70's meant that you usually
befriended others that were in the same
situation. I think I had only
two friends out of all of my friends
in Saratoga that actually still saw
their dads. As for the reason
why, all you had to do was see how the
mothers made it nearly impossible for
the children to see their dads without
emotional trauma, scenes, etc...
"It was ugly then and
it is ugly now...no one parent should
have so much control. If shared parenting
can give both the say they deserve,
our next generations will be much healthier."
Help for Men Struggling with Relationships,
Depression, Anger or Anxiety
The Men's Center Los Angeles offers
individual, couple, family and group
counseling with a focus on men's issues.
Call them at (818) 348-9302 or go to
Concerned about Financial Issues in
If you're concerned about financial
issues in your divorce, contact
Jim DiGabriele of DiGabriele, McNulty
& Co by email
here or at 973-243-2600.
St. Louis Man Kills 4, Self Over Child
According to the article
it was a mistake, it cost the lives
of my family' (St. Louis Post-Dispatch,
"Did the state
make some kind of mistake in calculating
Herbert L. Chalmers' child support,
possibly sparking a rampage that killed
four women--including his children's
mother and two members of the family
whose business garnisheed his wages?
"Chalmers made it clear
he felt there had been an error, railing
about it for months before Tuesday's
bloody spree. He complained about it
to some survivors of the tragedy before
using his last shot on himself...
"Chalmers told his boss, co-workers
and at least one friend that part of
his salary was being wrongly withheld.
"'What set him off was
the fact that they were garnisheeing
his check,' his co-worker James Lee,
76, said after the shooting stopped.
Lee and another co-worker said Chalmers
denied being the father of the children.
"Records indicate that
Chalmers had accepted responsibility
as father on the birth certificates,
but reportedly he claimed later he determined
he was not their father...
"The children are now grown, and
the child-support issue involves payments
allegedly owed from the past.
"Charlie Finninger, who with his
wife owned Finninger's Catering Service
in St. Louis, said Chalmers, a five-year
employee, complained several months
ago that the garnishment was wrong.
"'I told him my hands
were tied,' Finninger said. 'I told
him if the state was wrong, then he
should fight it.' Finninger offered
Chalmers copies of documents to help
make his case...
wondered aloud Friday whether Chalmers
had been right about an error. 'If it
was a mistake, it cost the lives of
said] he couldn't survive on $200 every
two weeks and was going to kill the
people who had made him suffer...
"It appears that Chalmers'
withholding for child support had almost
doubled over three years...
"Chalmers' back child-support payment
ballooned from $362 per month in 2003
to what seems to be $675 three years
Finninger also told the Post-Dispatch
"From a one to 10, I would
say he was a 10 employee...He was always
on time. Sometimes he talked too much,
but he never gave us any problem."
Chalmers worked in the kitchen and occasionally
drove a truck for the caterers.
It goes without saying, though I'll
say it anyway, that what Chalmers did
was absolutely unforgivable no matter
what his child support situation. Having
said that, I would also say that, given
the enormous problems with the child
support system, I'm surprised that such
incidents aren't more common. I've received
countless letters from men who are being
harmed by child support system errors
In my co-authored column
Persecuting Low Income Parents (Cincinnati
Post, Kentucky Post, 8/26/05), I
discussed the problem of pervasive child
support enforcement errors, and also
of the unconscionably callous actions
taken against low income noncustodial
parents by chest-thumping district attorneys.
Family law attorney Jeff Leving and
"In one McCracken
County, Kentucky case, Francis Borgia,
a carpet cleaner in Paducah, slit his
throat in the courtroom after being
sentenced to two years in jail for being
$7,000 behind on child support. According
to newspaper accounts, Borgia had become
a 'deadbeat' after he lost a good paying
job working in a casino and could not
get a downward modification on his support.
"Also victimized by Maze's
list [of alleged deadbeats published
in the Louisville Courier-Journal]
are those who are named in error. For
example, according to television station
WAVE 3 in Louisville, Maze listed James
H. Frazier as a deadbeat who owes $57,000
but mistakenly gave out the home address
of James R. Frazier. James R. Frazier
and his wife Bertha have been erroneously
targeted by enforcement officials before,
and have spent years fighting to straighten
out the error. The agency had previously
acknowledged its mistake--and then went
ahead and published the erroneous information
collection agencies are notorious for
their errors and bureaucratic bungling,
as even supporters of the lists such
as the Association for Children for
Enforcement of Support admit. A study
conducted by ACES revealed that state
child support enforcement agencies nationwide
had failed to distribute over $500 million
which had been paid by noncustodial
identity, as in the Frazier case, common
agency errors include: mathematical
errors; failure to record or transfer
records of payments; billing men for
children they did not father; failing
to stop child support when a child reaches
the age of emancipation; accepting custodial
parents' false reports of nonpayment;
and failure to update child support
orders with later court rulings affecting
modifications. Audits and evaluations
have shown that errors comprise a third
of all arrearages in some states and
who survived his courtroom suicide attempt,
"'My only 'crime'
was my failure to make as much money
as the state demanded...I couldn't quite
understand why I was treated so harshly.
I'm not a deadbeat dad. I'm a broke
The abusive, error-riddled child support
system was also behind Derrick Miller's
suicide. In my column
Distraught Father's Courthouse Suicide
Highlights America's Male Suicide Epidemic
(San Diego Union-Tribune, 1/11/02)
father struggling with overdue child
support obligations and adverse family
court decisions committed suicide on
the steps of the downtown San Diego
courthouse Monday. Angrily waving court
documents, 43 year-old Derrick Miller
walked up to court personnel at the
entrance, said 'You did this to me,'
and shot himself in the head...
"[One of the] most common
suicide victims are divorced and/or
estranged fathers like Derrick Miller.
In fact, a divorced father is ten times
more likely to commit suicide than a
divorced mother, and three times more
likely to commit suicide than a married
National Coalition of Free Men activist
Harry Crouch later found documents which
showed that in the fall of 2001 Miller's
monthly child support obligations for
the three children of a previous marriage
were more than doubled, and Miller was
asked to pay over $1,650 a month out
of a net income of a little over
$2,000 a month.
After my column was published, Derrick
Miller's widow, Yavonne Miller, wrote
me, telling me that her husband took
his own life because he had been stripped
of the ability to take care of his family
and thus felt himself to be a "burden
Missouri child support officials say
they're investigating the Chalmers case
to see if they had made a mistake. Don't
hold your breath. We've discussed child
support enforcement's abusive tactics
His Side with Glenn Sacks on
many occasions--to listen to a couple
Fathers Targeted by Cox Speak Out
Child Support Civil Rights Violations
The Second Wives Club
The Second Wives Club is what women
in blended families are looking for:
Remarriage, divorce, child custody,
and step parenting discussed in a solution-oriented,
mature, and intelligent way; articles
and news written by thought-provoking
experts and journalists; personal accounts
and advice from some of life's most
Help for Boston Dads
Boston family law attorney Nick Palermo
is a shared custody advocate who believes
that divorced dads are parents, not
visitors. The Law Offices of Nicholas
Palermo is a dedicated and committed
trial law firm which has worked to make
shared custody for all fit parents the
law of the land.
LAW OFFICES OF NICHOLAS PALERMO
A Myth About Dads as Primary Caregivers
I heard part of a radio interview with
anti-feminist writer Caitlin Flanagan
this morning while driving my kids to
school. The host asked Flanagan about
stay at home dads or dads as primary
caregivers. Flanagan was positive and
supportive of this, but put it in terms
of "when mom earns more, this makes
sense," or "if mom's job is
more important or demanding, it's good
that dads pick up the slack" (not
The host agreed with Flanagan. What
Flanagan says is true, but both Flanagan
and the radio host missed the most important
aspect of dads as primary caregivers--sometimes
they're the parent who's better at it.
In other cases, they may not be better
at it, but they might be happier or
more suited to it. Or they may appreciate
the experience more than the mother
does, because the dad never expected
to have the opportunity.
As the primary caregiver for my kids
for the past eight years, I find it
mildly annoying that it is so often
couched in terms of being an economic
mediocrity. I'm the primary caregiver
because that's what's best for my family.
I've discussed the issue of stay at
home dads in several columns, including
Father Care: The Other Child Care Option
(W. New York Family Magazine, 6/01).
In Defense of R. Mark Rogers
According to the article
Economist wants back in bidding: Child-support
study in limbo since January (Concord
Georgia economist once jailed for failure
to pay child support said he's 'absolutely'
still interested in getting the contract
to advise New Hampshire officials on
child-support guidelines. He also wants
to clear his name.
state's child-support system is based
on a percentage of parental income,
but lawmakers want to rewrite the guidelines
to base them on the cost of raising
a child. They passed a bill last year
approving the money to hire an economist
to determine that cost, and Health and
Human Services Commissioner John Stephen
recommended R. Mark Rogers for the $200,000
Lynch thought the bid-evaluation process
might have been unfairly weighted to
Rogers over Policy Studies Inc., the
Colorado firm that also bid on the contract.
After he learned about Rogers's legal
history from the media in January, Lynch
stopped the contract from being placed
on the Executive Council agenda and
asked Attorney General Kelly Ayotte
who returned her report earlier this
month, said the process 'undermined
public confidence' and that the bidding
should be reopened. Lynch agreed with
the recommendation and...also made it
clear he does not want Stephen to recommend
Rogers again: 'I don't think he should
even be allowed to bid on it,' Lynch
"Rogers told the
Monitor last week that he hopes
to still be considered for the contract...
"Rogers said his economics
background speaks for itself, with a
'very strong ethic of objectivity,'
and should be the only thing considered.
He spent 19 years with the Federal Reserve,
authored an economics handbook published
by McGraw-Hill and served on the Georgia
Commission on Child Support. He also
partnered with a UNH professor in making
his proposal to the state.
"On the other hand, Rogers advocates
for reducing guidelines and has served
as an expert witness for noncustodial
parents who wish to pay less in child
support. A divorced father, he was jailed
for two weeks in the mid-1990s after
failing to pay more than $7,000 in child
support. He said he suffered a financial
downturn, filed for bankruptcy and set
up a back-payment system to his ex-wife
through bankruptcy court.
"A superior court judge thought
the move was a ploy and found him in
contempt. Rogers waited in county jail
until his mother cashed in her retirement
fund to bail him out, he said."
A few comments:
1) I don't know whether
Rogers is telling the truth about
his jailing for non-payment of child
support in the mid-90's, but it certainly
sounds credible. I hear from fathers
all the time who have jailed or punished
by judges for failing to pay sums they
could not pay. It is very common for
men to suffer financial downturns and
then be treated as if it's just some
kind of scam to get out of child support.
Rogers was never tried and convicted--the
basis for him being a so-called "deadbeat
dad" rests on the opinion of one
judge. The judge may have been right,
but it's not the same as being a convicted
3) Even if Rogers were a convicted criminal,
and even if he really were guilty, he
probably still would not have been stripped
of the child support contract. There
is such a thing as paying one's debts
to society and moving on.
Rogers appeared on
His Side with Glenn Sacks to
debate Debbie Kline, Executive Director
Association for Children for the Enforcement
of Support, a nationwide organization
which advocates higher child support
levels and tougher child support enforcement.
According to Rogers, "Child support
guidelines currently in use by the U.S.
states typically generate awards that
are three to four times what they should
be if based on economically sound cost
tables and on a true equal duty of support
standard for both parents."
To listen to the show, go to
Are Child Support Levels Too High?
Rogers made some good points but I didn't
feel he proved his case that the awards
are "three to four times what they
should be." Of course I could have
easily stacked the debate against Debbie
so Rogers would have won, but I don't
do that. Despite the flaws in Debbie's
arguments, I think listening to that
show gives one a good idea of why fathers
get beat in child support debates in
Father: A Child's Right
www.fatherachildsright.org to find
information about child custody issues
related to fathers and their children's
rights, as well as book reviews on parenting,
custody and divorce. A fun and exciting
father & son baseball component
is added for enjoyment. Buy books, magazines
and DVDs for your children. Learn about
Michigan Shared Parenting bill.
College Campuses Are Hostile Environments
for Young Men
I've written many times about the anti-male
hostility prevalent on our college campuses.
In my column
Why Males Don't Go to College (She
Thinks, 11/13/02); I noted:
feminism has made college campuses a
place where many males feel unwanted
and unwelcome. To use a feminist term,
our universities have become 'hostile
environments' for young men. To illustrate,
let's look at one campus--the University
of California at Los Angeles, 1999-2001.
about men--what dissident feminist Christina
Hoff Sommers and others call 'Hate Statistics'--were
an integral part of the campus culture.
The Women's Resource Center (later renamed
the Center for Women and Men), the Clothesline
Project and others publicized discredited
academic frauds like 'one in four college
women has been the victim of rape or
attempted rape' and 'domestic violence
is the leading cause of injury to women
aged 15 to 44.'
such statistics were repeated ad infinitum
and ad nauseam by the campus newspaper,
the Daily Bruin, and also by
both professors and students. The message
behind the lies was clear--men are so
powerful and despicable, and women are
so helpless and victimized, that men
had better not dare to complain about
attitude towards males is manifest in
the classroom as well..."
One of my readers sent me a nice example
of this last week. The reader wrote
the University of Utah about their policy
of having a women's week but not a men's
week. In response,
Leo Leckie, Executive Assistant
to the Associate Vice President for
Diversity of the University of Utah,
"'Men's Week' is
celebrated on this campus, in this city,
this state, in this country and in the
world 24 hours a day, 7 days a week,
and 365 days a year. The names on a
vast majority of the buildings and named
rooms and halls on our campus is but
one of many examples that attest to
the celebration of men. And there are
indeed many, many offices and organizations
on this campus that celebrate men daily.
"Because of the historical
and continued marginalization of women
and people of color on our campus, in
our state, and in our country, our office
specifically continues the essential
work of representing these marginalized
groups. The Women's Week Celebration
is precisely that, a celebration of
women, and invites everyone to join
in that celebration.
a personal note, I am a white straight
male, and as such I remind myself that
I walk in the most privileged and empowered
of spaces in this country. I remind
myself that I have benefited from the
country's oldest affirmative action
program, and that my privilege is reinforced
systemically every day. The challenge
for me, as someone who occupies the
highest rung on the ladder of power
and privilege, is to remind myself that
events that attempt to create awareness
around issues of equity are about precisely
Of course I dispute Leckie's conviction
that men are the privileged gender in
the United States--men have some advantages,
but they also have disadvantages, too.
One of the things which annoys me about
Leckie's letter is the way he equates
the experiences and social positions
of blacks and Latinos with those of
middle class white women. Blacks and
Latinos are disadvantaged groups, white
middle class women are not. To write
to Leckie, click
(A note about posting email addresses
on my enewsletter. On numerous occasions
people I've criticized on this enewsletter
have been flooded with angry letters
from my readers. However, I have never
invaded a person's privacy. My policy
is simple--if the email address is already
available on the internet, I post it.
If it is not, I assume it to be a private
email address and I don't post it. Leckie's
posted on 138 internet web pages, so
it's a public email address.)
Leckie's "men have everything/women
have nothing so who cares what issues
men face" position reminds me a
lot of Michael Moore. In my column
Michael Moore, You Used to Be My Hero
(Fredericksburg Free Lance-Star,
2/8/04 I noted: "Michael, you
have betrayed those whose cause you
once championed. Once the voice of the
unappreciated working man, I have watched
in amazement and dismay as you have
degenerated into one of the all too
common scourges of our society--the
low rent man-basher who pours derision
upon the last remaining politically
correct target of bigotry: men."
We've discussed the issue of (alleged)
male privilege on
His Side with Glenn Sacks many
times--some examples are:
NOMAS Leader Michael Kimmel Criticizes
Men's Movement (6/6/05);
Are American Women Oppressed? (11/28/04);
Is the Men's Movement Misogynistic?
To learn more about how Woman's Studies
have turned our universities into hostile
environments for our young men, see
Hate My Father? No Ma'am! (World
Net Daily, 4/8/02);
New Study Finds Myths, Misrepresentations
in Women's Studies Textbooks (Cybercast
News Service, 4/1/02);
The Best Valentine's Day Gift for College
Students: Gender Reconciliation
(She Thinks, 2/13/03); and the
His Side shows
Poisoning Valentine's Day (2/1/04)
Former Women's Studies Professor Daphne
Patai Slams Academic Feminism (7/6/03).
Lisa Scott Launches RealFamilyLaw.com
Shared Parenting Advocate/Family Law
Attorney Lisa Scott has just launched
www.RealFamilyLaw.com to expose
the truth about what is happening in
our family law system. Lisa, the all-time
leader in appearances on His Side
with Glenn Sacks, says that she
was "tired of having her stuff
rejected by elitist bar publications
and politically-correct newspapers"
and decided to start her own website.
Friend to Fathers and Children Passes
I was recently informed by
Dayle Kichula that Louise
Malenfant, a friend to fathers and children
of divorce, died earlier this month.
I asked Dayle to write a eulogy for
my readers, and this is what he wrote:
"Louise Malenfant passed
away peacefully in her home in Calgary,
Alberta on April 2, 2006. She
was laid to rest in a quiet ceremony
by family members and a few of her many
friends on April 5, 2006.
"Louise was the founder of Parents
Helping Parents, a family advocacy program
launched to assist parents falsely accused
of abuse during divorce proceedings.
She worked tirelessly to bring about
change in the child welfare system in
Manitoba and a few years ago moved to
Alberta in hope of bringing about change
to the bureaucracy here as she was successful
doing in Manitoba.
helped countless parents, the majority
of which were fathers, to regain access
to their children as well as to regain
their reputations, both lost due to
false allegations of abuse. Louise's
dream was to initiate change in the
system whereby it would be more difficult
for spouses to lie about abuse in order
to sever access by the other parent
to their children. She crusaded for
full and fair investigations by child
welfare authorities as well as by law
led and was the sole operator in the
PHP organization. Losing her will be
felt by many. It is this writer's hope
that there will be someone to carry
on and realize Louise's dream.
"Louise was often told
that she was 'An Angel on Earth,' to
which she would give a modest giggle
and say 'If I don't do this, who will?'
She provided a lifeline to all of her
clients, at a time when all hope was
lost. She would take control of the
situation and in no time at all her
clients would begin to see some light
at the end of the tunnel.
To our Angel on Earth
Louise Marie Malenfant
You have earned your heavenly wings
now. You will be missed.
God love your heart and rest your soul."
An Announcement from the Leaders of
the Campaign Against PBS's Anti-Father
Breaking the Silence
The following is a statement from
Fathers & Families, the
American Coalition for Fathers &
Children, and newspaper columnist
Glenn Sacks, the leaders of the
Campaign Against PBS's Father-Bashing
Breaking the Silence:
"The purpose of this letter
is to update you on what is happening
with PBS in relation to its father-bashing
Breaking the Silence: Children's Stories.
As most of you know, last fall we led
a protest campaign against the film.
"Breaking the Silence,
which aired on many PBS affiliates in
late October, portrayed divorcing dads
who contested custody as batterers who
wanted to punish and abuse their ex-wives.
It presented an extremely one-sided,
harmful and inaccurate view of divorce
and child custody cases.
response to our protest, over 10,000
people called or wrote PBS, and our
widespread media coverage. From
the beginning our demand was simple--we
wanted PBS to provide fatherhood and
shared parenting advocates a meaningful
opportunity to present our side of the
issue. The campaign was led by the shared
Fathers & Families and the
American Coalition for Fathers &
Children, and by newspaper columnist
the Ombudsman for
PBS and the Corporation for Public
spoke out strongly against the biased
nature of the documentary. In
statement released on December 20,
PBS notified us that it would 'commission
an hour-long documentary' that would
be 'produced and broadcast in Spring
2006' for the purpose of further examining
the 'complex and important issues' raised
in the film and by our campaign. Though
PBS defended Breaking the Silence,
they pledged that the 'hour-long treatment
of the subject will allow ample opportunity'
for those of differing views to 'have
their perspectives shared, challenged
PBS for understanding our concerns and
taking action to address the situation.
We have been in talks with the producers
who are making the new film on behalf
of PBS, and film crews will be filming
and conducting interviews in New York,
Connecticut, Massachusetts, and other
places in April. Fathers &
Families members will be filmed April
27 and 28. The producers have informed
us that they are also interviewing other
experts on child custody, family law,
domestic violence, and related issues.
"We will keep you informed
as events progress.
Ned Holstein, M.D., M.S., Chair, Board
of Directors, Fathers & Families
Dan Hogan, J.D., Ph.D., Executive Director,
Fathers & Families
Mike McCormick, Executive Director,
American Coalition for Fathers and Children
Glenn Sacks, newspaper columnist"
The PBS Campaign
I would like once again to thank the
Sackson Horde and our allies for their
massive participation in the campaign
against PBS's Breaking the Silence.
The film was a public relations debacle
for PBS, particularly after we revealed
that one of the mothers portrayed as
a heroic victim in the film
had been found culpable of multiple
acts of child abuse by a California
We will not know the exact nature of
this new film for certain until the
final cut is made and the film is broadcast.
However, over the past several months
PBS has taken steps which indicate that
they intend to honor their commitment
to produce a balanced program.
DadsDivorce.com informs fathers
about their rights during divorce litigation
while providing them with concrete,
practical resources to get results in
DadsDivorce.com is a popular meeting
place for fathers facing divorce.
Learn About the 3 Forces That Make Men
Weak, 'Nice,' and Passive Paul
Coughlin, author of
No More Christian Nice Guy: When Being
Nice--Instead of Good--Hurts Men, Women,
and Children, takes aim at a cultural
prejudice against men, a dangerous caricature
of gentle Jesus meek and mild, and explains
how passive people think and how they
are made, not born. Says Dr. Laura,
who wrote the forward, "This is
a fabulous book. It's so clever, I think
it will jump-start you guys--Christian
or otherwise." Join the Good Guy
Rebellion and start a better life today.
English Fatherhood Activists Strike
Reuters:"Two fathers' rights
campaigners were arrested on Friday
after scaling Westminster Abbey with
a crucified dummy Jesus Christ, police
demanding greater access to their children
clambered up the historic landmark on
Thursday with the dummy figure that
wore a T-shirt bearing the words: 'Our
Father Who Art in Hell.'
'Real Fathers For Justice' said in a
statement that they had staged their
Easter protest to 'demand that both
parents be as equal in family law as
they are in the eyes of God.'
"A police spokeswoman said: 'They
were arrested for aggravated trespass
when they came down early this afternoon.
They have been taken to a central London
January, the mainstream Fathers4Justice
campaign group decided to disband after
reports that police had foiled a plot
to kidnap Prime Minister Tony Blair's
five-year-old son Leo.
group, which insisted that none of its
current members had been involved in
any kidnap plot, had staged several
high-profile protests in the past few
dressed as Batman climbed Queen Elizabeth's
Buckingham Palace in 2004 and another
threw purple flour bombs at Blair while
he addressed parliament."
According to another report, one of
the two men protesting had not seen
his child for four years.
The "kidnap plot" mentioned
by Reuters and every other media outlet
reporting on the Westminster Abbey protest
was a scam. At the time screaming headlines
proclaimed "Plot to kidnap Blair's
son smashed," "UK police foil
plot to kidnap Blair's son," and
"Scotland Yard uncovers plot to
kidnap Blair's son." These
illustrate Mark Twain's assertion that
"a lie can travel halfway around
the world while the truth is still putting
on its shoes."
Major media worldwide--including CNN,
the Associated Press, the BBC, Fox News,
Reuters, and hundreds of newspapers--reported
that extremists tied to the British
fathers' rights group Fathers 4 Justice
planned to kidnap British Prime Minister
Tony Blair's five-year-old son Leo.
Yet subsequent reports reveal that the
sensationalized kidnapping 'plot' was
apparently nothing more than drunken
pub chattering among a few fools and
loudmouths who evidently didn't realize
they were being monitored. Not a single
arrest has been made.
Nevertheless, this non-incident is and
will for many years be used to portray
the fathers' movement as violent extremists.
It is certainly true that fathers' groups
do attract a lunatic fringe. But most
fathers' activists are decent, loving
dads who can't quite believe that the
family law system so readily allowed
them to be driven out of the lives of
the children who love them and need
Fathers 4 Justice's always nonviolent
campaign has included many daring, highly
publicized protests atop cranes, bridges,
and government buildings. The grievances
which drive them and activists in the
US, Australia, and Western Europe are
I have repeatedly defended Fathers 4
Justice's tactics and encouraged their
extension into the United States. To
learn more, see
The Future of the American Father,
my address to the 2004 Men's Rights
Congress in Washington, DC. In my speech
"Fathers 4 Justice
has shown that men CAN fight for themselves
as men and men CAN win. It takes a strategy,
it takes discipline, and it takes unity...I
want to see us take the fight here,
and I want us to fight with the same
courage, the same discipline, the same
humanity, the same humor, and the same
conviction our brothers in England have
"Part of our
problem is that we've waited for large
numbers, and felt that if we don't have
them we can't fight. What Fathers
4 Justice has shown us is that you don't
need large numbers of people--what you
need is a cause which resonates with
a lot of people--and God knows the mistreatment
of fathers certainly does--and you need
a small, disciplined group willing to
take dramatic action to fight. I want
David Chicks and
Jolly Stansbys and
Ron Davises and
Powdermen in every American city
and in every legislature and family
court in the country. We can fight,
we should fight, we must fight, and
the men in this room right now should
form the core leadership of that fight."
Online Support for Men Going Through
Don't feel isolated, frightened, confused
or alone when going through your divorce.
Get the help and support you need without
leaving your home at the
Ottawa Divorce Forums.
BBC Program Covers International Fatherhood
Movement, Plays Segments from His
Side with Glenn Sacks
The BBC recently did a program on the
international fatherhood movement. The
show featured segments from radio shows
in South Africa, Australia, the Czech
His Side with Glenn Sacks here
in the U.S. The program discussed the
Fathers 4 Justice helped bring the
issue of fathers' rights into the public
The segments from
Side were from the show
Father Fights Adoption Agency for Right
to Raise His Son (7/17/05), which
discussed the Mark Huddleston case.
Huddleston is the biological father
of a 16-month-old child he says he wants
to raise. But a judge has ruled the
child should remain with its adoptive
parents, who have had custody since
the infant was three days old. Huddleston
claims he didn't know the baby existed
until two months after its birth, and
the state said the private adoption
agency hadn't properly notified Huddleston.
Despite doing everything possible to
be a father to his son, Huddleston's
baby boy was given away by a vindictive
mother working hand in glove with a
predatory adoption agency. Sixteen months
and $70,000 in legal fees later, Huddleston
has no rights to his own son. Huddleston,
his attorney P.J. Hartman, and Mike
McCormick, Executive Director of the
American Coalition for Fathers and Children,
were guests on the show.
To listen to the show, click
Dads, Learn to Take Charge of Your Case
in Family Court
www.Liberty-Bell-Union.org to take
a comprehensive ONLINE course that teaches
you how to handle your case - with or
without a lawyer. Learn to Fight for
your rights and your children -all for
one-hour of a lawyer's fees. Learn to
tell public about the tyranny that fathers
face in these courts:
Reason for Revolution: The Tyranny Against
Fathers, Family, and Freedom.
Has Your Career Been Impacted by Custody
After empowering people's careers for
over 20 year, I was duly initiated into
family law just like you--through a
30 month, $520,000 custody suit.
From corporate transitions to home-based
business options, know that there is
a way for you to shake the financial
shackles and experience a "no limits"
career. More than ever, your kids
now need a free and available parent.
Be there for them... and for yourself.
Darrell W. Gurney,
Parental Alienation Awareness Day
Parental Alienation Awareness Day
today (April 25) raises awareness about
Parental Alienation Syndrome, the psychological
abuse children suffer when a parent
attempts to turn his or her children
against the parent after divorce or
Parental Alienation involves the systematic
brainwashing and manipulation of children,
both overtly and with subtle behaviors,
that results in the destruction of a
loving relationship they once shared
with the parent. As a result, the child
fears and/or hates the target parent
without reason. According to psychologist
Richard Warshak, author of Divorce
Poison, in PAS cases "You will
see a degree of contempt and cruelty
reserved for one's worst enemies".
In my column
PBS Declares War on Dads (World
Net Daily, 10/20/05), I described
numerous Parental Alienation scenarios,
including the following:
four year-old boy is jumping up and
down with joy.
"Dad gets out
of the car.
here! Daddy's here!'
boy is behind a locked screen door.
He tries to open it.
here! Mommy, look, daddy's here!'
"Dad knows he shouldn't open
the door. He waits for his ex-wife to
open the door. She doesn't do it.
"'This is my visitation time,'
Dad says, waving a court document.
"Mom still won't open the
"The boy jumps
up and down, saying 'daddy, daddy.'
He yanks on the screen door handle but
still can't get it open.
looks at his little boy. He pauses,
takes a deep breath, and walks back
to his car.
boy doesn't understand. Why won't daddy
come? Why is daddy walking away from
"The little boy disappears
inside the house.
calls the police. When the officers
arrive he shows them his court documents.
The officers go inside to investigate.
They come out a few minutes later.
"'Your son says he doesn't
want to see you,' the officer says.
'There's nothing I can do. You'll have
to deal with it in the court. I can't
make him go with you if he doesn't want
"Dad finally gets
to see his kids three months later.
The children spit on both him and their
grandmother. Almost in unison they repeat
'I don't want to be here. I want to
go home with mommy, I don't want to
be here. I want to go home with mommy,
I don't want to be here. I want to go
home with mommy.'"
Parental Alienation Awareness Day
include Dr. Richard Warshak, Dr. Michael
Bone, Dr. Reena Sommer, and numerous
others. Warshak played an important
role in the
LaMusga move-away case in the
California Supreme Court (to learn more,
here). Bone helps divorced parents
Tree House Solutions, which he co-founded.
Sommer has done fine work on PAS, including
Campaign Against PBS's Father-Bashing
Breaking the Silence and regarding
the tragic Lohstroh Parental Alienation
case. To hear
Sommer discuss PAS and Lohstroh
His Side with Glenn Sacks, see
The Lohstroh Case: Alienating Mother
Pushes 10 Year-Old Boy to Kill Father
To learn more about Parental Alienation
Awareness Day, go to
or write to them
Are You a Target of Parental Alienation
The sponsors of
Parental Alienation Awareness Day
are interested in hearing your PAS story.
To tell your story, click
The Secrets of Happily Married Men
How can a man achieve a long and happy
marriage? If you've been checking out
advice columns or seeing a therapist,
you may have been looking in the wrong
place. Despite all the advances in brain
technology, and all of that we have
learned about developmental psychology--men
and women are given the same advice
about solving problems. But when we
ask men what works for them, we hear
a different story.
How Does Sex Discrimination Affect Men
National Coalition of Free Men is
a non-profit educational & civil
rights organization that looks at the
ways sex discrimination affects men
NCFM helps provide men a unified
voice on important political and social
Some Feminist Domestic Violence Leaders
Do Have Some Brain Cells Firing
Some of you may recall my sparring
, founder and president
of the Family Violence Prevention
Fund, one of the world's leading domestic
violence organizations, in the San
Soler was unhappy over my column
Domestic violence a two-way street
(San Francisco Chronicle
Domestic Violence Series Substitutes
Emotion for Facts
) and fired back
at me in the Chronicle, calling my
column a "shameful example of
cherry-picking and distorting data
to confuse readers." Read her
My domestic violence column was written
in response to a recent series of
alarmist, manbashing articles in Chronicle
The article series to which this opinion
column responds is (Traces
of Danger Beneath the Calm
, San Francisco
At the time we invited Soler to discuss
the issue with us on
His Side with Glenn Sacks
but she declined. However, I recently
noticed some encouraging news about
Soler in a
Men's News Daily
domestic violence expert Richard L.
Mandatory Arrest and No-Drop Prosecution
"Soler believes that all acts
of intimate partner violence are wrong.
But, Soler acknowledges that domestic
is not one person pushing
another person once or twice because
of an argument. Soler believes that
domestic violence occurs when
there is 'an
of fear, intimidation and violent
Davis also has some positive news
about Ellen Pence, who pioneered the
highly-influential Duluth Intervention
Project. In my column
Domestic Violence Treatment Policies
Put Abused Women in Harm's Way
11/7/05) I wrote:
"Current domestic violence treatment
strategies are based on the Duluth
model, which depicts domestic violence
as a function of patriarchy and men's
patriarchal privilege. This model
assumes that the reason men physically
abuse women is to maintain control
over them. In ideologically-driven
classes for offenders, men in need
of serious psychological intervention
are instead screamed at and called
'domestic terrorists' and 'fascists.'
"A recent report by the National
Research Council's Committee on Law
and Justice condemns these programs
for failing to consider non-Duluth
causes of domestic violence. The report
criticizes the way batterers are 'treated
as a homogeneous group,' and states
that treatment programs are 'driven
by ideology and stakeholder interests
rather than by plausible theories
and scientific evidence of cause.'
"While some domestic violence
no doubt stems from a warped desire
to control spouses or intimates, most
experts believe that the roots of
domestic violence generally lay elsewhere."
According to Davis, Pence "also
believes that today's one-size-fits-all
mandatory arrest and no-drop prosecution
policies are not accomplishing what
the Duluth Intervention Project intended.
Pence acknowledges and understands
that those who commit minor acts of
'family conflict' or one act of abuse
are not 'batterers.'"
Davis' article criticizes the way
the current domestic violence system
hammers on anyone accused of abuse,
regardless of whether the individual
in question is truly a batterer or
was instead involved in a minor and/or
mutual physical confrontation, or
was falsely accused altogether. I've
discussed this problem in numerous
Baseball Player's Domestic Violence
Arrest Demonstrates How Men are Presumed
Guilty in Domestic Disputes
Angeles Daily Journal, San Francisco
VAWA Renewal Provides Opportunity
to Stop Destruction of Innocent Cops'
(Ft. Worth Star-Telegram
7/19/05), and my co-authored
Domestic Violence Lawsuit Will Help
Secure Services for All Abuse Victims
(Los Angeles Daily Journal, San
Francisco Daily Journal,
Legal Help for Fathers
If you live in Los Angeles, Riverside
or Orange counties and you're facing
a divorce, separation, or a child custody
issue, the law firm of Oddenino &
Gaule can help.
Congressional Candidate Takes Strong
Stand for Noncustodial Parents' Rights
In 2004 Libertarian presidential candidate
Michael Badnarik had a strong noncustodial
platform. Badnarik is clearly
aware of and sensitive to the basic
problems fathers today face, particularly
the sole custody norm and the denigration
of noncustodial parents to "second
class parent" status. Badnarik
is running for Congress in 2006--to
learn more, go to
Domestic Violence Law Enforcement
Policies Criticized by Ex-Cop
George Sperry, a retired police officer,
echoes similar sentiments in a recent
letter to the editor
of a San
Diego newspaper. Sperry wrote:
"I recall police training classes
in the '70s and '80s--mandated after
the earlier laws were passed--given
by female instructors (never saw a
male instructor), with their teachings
so dripping with male hatred that
everyone in the class felt uncomfortable,
male and female officers alike. Truly
abused women needed better laws to
protect them, but not these. They
also removed arrest decisions from
the responding officer and we repeatedly
had to arrest the man, some whose
only crime was physically repelling
a woman attacking him.
"In the hundreds of calls of
domestic violence I responded to in
my career, perhaps 90 percent to 95
percent were false, yet I saw children's
and men's lives destroyed irrevocably
due to vindictive, greedy, spoiled,
mentally imbalanced, and/or drug-infested
women perverting the judicial system.
This is not to say the man was a pillar
of virtue, just that the judicial
sword was placed in the woman's hand
by poor laws.
"The best I could do, in face
of mandated laws, would be to also
arrest the woman if there was sufficient
evidence she also was violently involved
(not self-defense reactions) or initiated
the incident. On rare occasion, able
to prove the woman's claim was false,
I would arrest only her. Obviously,
in those cases, I was not popular
with whatever movement supported this
'Alice in Wonderland' approach, nor
with supervisors or prosecuting attorneys
so self-absorbed with political correctness
that truth was irrelevant."
Convicted Murderess Gets Protective
Order Against the Father Whose Girl
The Judi L. Noe case is....amazing.
According to the Associated Press
Woman convicted of killing daughter
gets protective order
"A woman convicted of drowning
her 2-year-old daughter obtained a
protective order against the girl's
father after she was released from
prison earlier this week.
"Judi L. Noe, 36, served one
year and 13 days in prison on a charge
of voluntary manslaughter for drowning
her daughter, Brieana Jaide Noe, in
"The girl's father, Brad May,
said Tuesday he was not surprised
by the order, granted by an Allen
Superior Court magistrate. He has
been critical of the decision to release
"'I wish somebody would have
put half this much energy into protecting
Brieana as they are into protecting
Judi now,' May said.
"Noe pleaded guilty but mentally
ill to the reduced charges and was
sentenced to serve five years of an
eight-year sentence in prison, followed
by three years on probation.
"Allen Superior Court Judge John
Surbeck Jr. on Feb. 23 approved Noe's
early release from prison and moved
her to the county's re-entry program,
which requires weekly court appearances
and provides counseling and job-search
"Noe was scheduled to begin mental
health treatment this week as part
of her early release.
"The protective order prohibits
May, who lives in Michigan, from contacting
Noe in any manner, including by telephone,
in person or by letter and from harassing,
annoying, or threatening her for two
Amazing--she murders (OK, "manslaughters")
their baby, and she's a victim in
need of protection.
According to another article, after
what could be euphemistically called
Noe's "sentencing" on March
29 of last year, the little girl's
father "described the sentence
as absurd and said five years in prison
isn't enough time for 'a baby killer.'"
The father asserted that it was not
a coincidence that Noe drowned Brieana
on Father's Day, and told the judge
during the hearing that "he believed
Noe planned to kill their daughter
after he began pursuing custody. He
also told the judge he believes his
daughter struggled and suffered for
at least 30 minutes before she died,
based on his conversations with doctors."
If May had been given custody of the
little girl instead of her mother,
she would be alive today.
This case is another fine example
of the female sentencing discount.
Carol Kuhn, the child's paternal grandmother,
believes "the judicial system
made a joke of the situation by giving
Noe such a short prison term."
"Judi essentially just got away
with it," Kuhn said.
I discussed the female sentencing
discount in my column
Female Murderers Seen in a Different
Light: Society Prefers to View Violent
Women as Victims
Star-News & Affiliated Papers,
7/5/01). My friend Marc Angelucci
later wrote a better and more thorough
analysis of this problem--see
Males Get Longer Sentences Than Females
For Same Crime
To learn more about the problem of
restraining order abuse, see my co-authored
Letterman Case Shows Problems with
1/17/06) and my column
VAWA Renewal Provides Opportunity
to Stop Destruction of Innocent Cops'
Careers (Ft. Worth Star-Telegram,
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